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My plan for my first brisket!
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smcswain
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Joined: 06 Jul 2011
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Location: Charleston, SC

PostPosted: Sat Jul 23 11 9:41 pm    Post subject: My plan for my first brisket! Reply with quote

I've been reading these forums for a few weeks now, plus getting some info off Virtual Weber Bullet, and I think I'm ready to cook my first brisket this weekend. I wanted to post my plan here to get critiques/answers before I screw it up.

I have a WSM cooker and a 5.4 lb brisket, which the butcher said he already trimmed (would've preferred to trim it myself), but if not, was going to trim to about 1/8 to 1/4 inch tonight, slather with some EVOO, and apply my rub, then wrap in plastic wrap and let sit in fridge overnight.

I'm going to get my briquettes and hickory wood chucks set up for the Minion Method tonight, so that hopefully I can get things going relatively quickly in the morning. I'm going to use play sand instead of water in the pan.

I want to be eating around 6-7pm, so with a 5.4 lb brisket, I'm estimating 5-8 hours cook time, although I'm planning to pan and foil to finish it off, so I assume that might make it substantially faster. In the morning, I'm going to fire up the smoker and place my brisket on the top rack, fat-side-up, straight out of the fridge once the smoker gets to 225, then maintain the temp 225-250 (hopefully without much trouble using the Minion Method). I'm going to try to let it go untouched until the internal temp hits 160-170, place it in a foil pan and cover it with foil, then put it back in until it gets to 195-205. At that point I'll check to make sure the probe slides in easily, and if so, take it out, double wrap it in foil, and place it in an empty ice chest on some towels to rest for 30 minutes to an hour (depending on how impatient my wife is for food).

Then I'm going to take it out, remove the point (which I want to chop up for sandwiches), and slice the flat up nice and thick.

I'll try to remember to post pictures along the way.

Here are my questions:
- As long as it doesn't rain, is there any problem with leaving my charcoal and wood chunks unlit in the smoker overnight?

- Is 250 degrees okay to cook a brisket? I've never used the Minion Method before, and it looks like the temp's supposed to sit around 250 even with the lower vents almost entirely closed. How low can you get the temp using the Minion Method?

- If I'm using pan and foil, is there any need to mop or baste it?

- When using a pan/foil, do you WRAP the brisket in foil and place that in the pan, or just put the brisket in a pan and cover the pan with foil?

- When I put it in the pan, do I place it in fat side up or down? Does it matter at that point?


Any answers and/or suggestions are greatly appreciated!
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Mr Tony's BBQ
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 23 11 9:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No
Yes
No
I just cover pan with foil, or wrap in foil
doesnt matter
Sounds like you have a good plan - dont over think it - thats when things go wrong [for me ]

If its done early, wrap in towels and set in cooler for up to 4 hours safely!
Take plenty of pictures [ weather it looks good or not] or prepare to be ridiculed and be told it never happened, [ maybe even ridiculed if burnt or raw, its part of the deal here - you may have signed a statement saying you would do so when you clicked on "I agree" during sign up] ] Not following picture rule has repercussions potentially leading to your man card removal!!!
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1buckie
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 23 11 10:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

smcswain wrote:

place my brisket on the top rack, fat-side-up,
- When I put it in the pan, do I place it in fat side up or down?

Here we go !!!
Down the rabbit hole !!!
Red pill or Blue pill?

smcswain, this is a question as old as meat over fire itself, I know you'll get a good answer~~~>
Mr Tony's right when he says don't overthink it,
you're doin' great, pay attention, have FUN & post pics if you're able

Check the sticky note right above where your post is now for photo info~~>PMPNL Etc,

Have fun playin' w/your food
~~~>K
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Shaymus
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 23 11 10:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When you're done, put the pan with the juices in the freezer. The fat will harden and you then can scrape the good stuff off of it to re heat.
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smcswain
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 23 11 10:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK, so I'm trying to test my picture posting ability, but I can't seem the only thing I can find is the "Img" button above, and I can't figure out how to use that. So what's the process for posting images?

While we're on that, anybody know why my avatar isn't showing up? I resized it to less than 80x80 and it's a small-enough file.
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Old Smoker
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 23 11 10:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the butcher said he already trimmed
I encountered the same thing at Costco awhile back,next time ask if they have any thats untrimmed. I always thought that what you see is what you get but now I know to ask. It actually was the butcher at Costco that pointed this out to me.They usually charge more for a already trimmed flat.
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smcswain
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 23 11 11:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, I posted this on the "Wood and Charcoal" forum a few days ago, but it hasn't gotten any response... http://thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=52548

Anybody use Harris Teeter brand 100% hardwood briquettes before?
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Mr Tony's BBQ
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 23 11 11:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=47314

others walked me through it - our better off having them than me!! lol
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1buckie
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PostPosted: Sat Jul 23 11 11:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

smcswain asked:

OK, so I'm trying to test my picture posting ability, but I can't seem
the only thing I can find is the "Img" button above, and I can't figure out how to use that.
So what's the process for posting images?

See the post Mr. Tony gave for sizes
And this for "How To...."
http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=4096

You have to send to a website of some sort, then copy to your post. Photobucket is just one of these....
In your post box it will show up as just type
Example IMG[fftu251smcswain date etc, etc,]IMG

while writing your post, use the"Preview" button below where you're typing to check that you photos are coming thru the way you'd like
Hope that helps
~>Ken
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Playmaker88
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24 11 12:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You dont want to put that brisket on straight from the fridge. Give it at least an hour or more to get to room temp
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smcswain
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24 11 1:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Playmaker88 wrote:
You dont want to put that brisket on straight from the fridge. Give it at least an hour or more to get to room temp


I figured I'd get more of a smoke ring straight out of the fridge.
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BluDawg
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24 11 1:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Playmaker88 wrote:
You dont want to put that brisket on straight from the fridge. Give it at least an hour or more to get to room temp
It wont hurt a thing to go from the frig to the pit I have done it a whole bunch of times and yes it will allow a little bigger smoke ring to form as it will take it longer to get the surface to 140° when the ring formation stops.
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Oregon smoker
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24 11 3:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Playmaker88 wrote:
You dont want to put that brisket on straight from the fridge. Give it at least an hour or more to get to room temp



I have done it both ways so many times and i dont personally believe there is much of a difference than adding a few minutes to the overall time.

I also point the flat directly south of the rising moon then flip it about 3/8's of the way through then bend it in half 25/32's of the way so the both ends are N to S... Shocked

Its a brisket, not science. BBQ is an art, not science. Dont bugger it all up with a bunch of nonsense.
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Old Smoker
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24 11 5:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
also point the flat directly south of the rising moon then flip it about 3/8's of the way through then bend it in half 25/32's of the way so the both ends are N to S...

Doesn't this position change during a leap year ..

Yeh about the only real draw back about going straight from the fridge to the cooker is it takes a little longer to cook because the meat has to warm up, I've always done it that way for butts and brisket.
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Tim_Abrahamson
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24 11 7:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

At that weight are you sure it has a point???

Also plan on starting your cook 2-3 hours earlier. If its done early just wrap in plastic wrap, then towels and place in a dry cooler. It will hold temp until you are ready to slice. You dont want yoru gests waiting for a stubborn piece of meat to cook.
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smcswain
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24 11 8:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tim_Abrahamson wrote:
At that weight are you sure it has a point???


Just took it out and applied the rub. I was actually a little disappointed that there seemed to be so little fat on it. And I do think it has a point. In fact, the point seems to account for about a third of the total.

Here's the brisket straight out of the package...



And here's after I trimmed away a couple of thick pieces of fat and applied my rub.



This is my first attempt at posting pictures, so hopefully this works.
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1buckie
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24 11 12:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pic sizes are just rite~>Don't go any larger
Clarity is also REAL good
~~~~>If it's between cookin' & messin' w/ photos, pay attention to the cook, you can always get the pix stuff next time !!!
Good Luck
~>Ken
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smcswain
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24 11 8:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK, it lit 20 briquettes and spead them around on top of the pile in the WSM. The vents are all open, and the temp seems to be rising very slowly. How fast should the temp initially come up using the Minion method? I put the coals on 20 minutes ago and I'm just at 117.
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k.a.m.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24 11 9:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

smcswain, depending on the weather mine takes anywhere from 15min to 30min. to reach 225° I start closing the intakes down to about 1/8 open at this point. I do use a water pan.
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smcswain
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24 11 9:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used the play sand as recommended, filled the water pan probably 3/4 full. Hopefully I don't have too much sand in there. It's now up to 150 after about 30 minutes, and it's 85 degrees outside, so that's hardly the thing slowing it down.
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