Author Topic: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?! - EDIT - I CAN!!  (Read 7107 times)

Offline Rider14

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Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?! - EDIT - I CAN!!
« on: January 14, 2015, 02:35:25 PM »
I just can't seem to get a tender brisket. Loving my rub, loving my flavor, it's just not... tender. I make my own rubs and injections, have perfected baby backs, pork butts, salmon and turkey with very consistent results. Not sure what to do different on the brisket, so I'm starting from scratch. Now I admit I've only done 4, but still... I'm using an Auberin PID with a 900W heating element. This shouldn't be so difficult.

Should I be using the top rack? Middle rack? Cut it in half? Just go for the flat? Where do you get your brisket? How do you trim it?

I'm at wits end.

Any of you that have a tried and true brisket recipe, I'd love to hear it, including ALL the details. I'll scratch mine completely and follow any recipe that you have consistently found success with on an NEW Original Smoker the the letter... Give me directions to feed my family and friends some tasty, tender brisket. I'll follow them.

If you've had success with the 900W or extra 500W element modification, I'd love to know that as well.

Thanks!

 -Dan
« Last Edit: August 21, 2015, 08:39:58 PM by Rider14 »

Offline tailfeathers

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Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2015, 03:03:18 PM »
I'm no expert by any means, but I have a 6 rack digital with a 900w element and a single probe Auber pid. I cook my brisket at 205-210F until it passes the fork test (meat fork inserted into the flat and twist, if it turns easily it's ready to come off.). Then I FTC for a couple of hours before diving in. I think the lower cooking temp helps tenderize the meat. A packer will take all of 24 hours usually.


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Offline dave01

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Re: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2015, 03:57:28 PM »
Question for Tailfeathers, Just wondering if you could smoke it and then cook it Sous Vide

Offline tailfeathers

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Re: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2015, 06:56:37 PM »
Haven't tried it (yet). Can't see a reason it wouldn't work though. I'll probably try with a smaller (and less expensive) cut first.


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Offline oil99

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Re: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2015, 07:54:45 PM »
What is final temp? My first guess... not cooking enough. Usually has to be over 200 and probe tender.


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Offline TedEbear

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Re: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2015, 08:01:24 PM »
I think the lower cooking temp helps tenderize the meat.

I discovered that with butts, too.  I used to smoke/cook them at a chamber temp of 225*F.  I experimented with 210*F a few times and they came out noticeably more tender and easier to pull.

Offline Ka Honu

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Re: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2015, 08:52:18 PM »
A couple things to consider...

     What grade of meat are you using? USDA Choice is good, Prime is awesome (but generally way too expensive), but anything less can end up tough no matter what you do.

     Have you tried using a "Texas crutch" (foil, foil pan, or parchment) from about 160o IT to finish?

     I use a stock Bradley OBS and generally smoke for 4 hours. After that your Bradley is essentially an oven so depending on weather and my mood I may finish in the kitchen.

     The best advice you will ever get on preparing and smoking briskets is on the recipe site - look for the post there by WesTexaSmoker and especially the 4 posts by Pachanga (he is the go-to guy for brisket).

Offline GusRobin

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Re: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2015, 09:25:50 PM »
We may be better able to offer suggestions if you provide a detail description of how you cook it, how long, and how you determine when you think it is done.
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Offline renoman

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Re: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2015, 02:47:22 PM »
After smoking cook it sous vide at 135 for 48-72 hrs. Before serving put it in a 450 oven for about 20 minutes.

Offline Dano

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Re: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2015, 07:54:23 AM »
I've done a number of them using Pachanga's process and outside of playing around with the dry rub stuck to the process rigidly. Never had a bad, tough brisket yet. Remember to get a full packer, IMPS 120 cut (point and flat together).   I personally don't crutch it, just well baste every 3 hours when I change the bisquette bowl. I always add fresh hot kettle water too for extra steam.   
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Offline scubadoo97

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Re: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2015, 10:16:00 AM »
Brisket can vary in the amount of intramuscular fat. Some will be more tender than others. But since you've done a number of them without success I would be looking at technique




Offline Rider14

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Re: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2015, 10:46:18 AM »
Answers in RED CAPS

A couple things to consider...

     What grade of meat are you using? USDA Choice is good, Prime is awesome (but generally way too expensive), but anything less can end up tough no matter what you do.  CHOICE

     Have you tried using a "Texas crutch" (foil, foil pan, or parchment) from about 160o IT to finish? YES, FOIL x2 and FOIL PAN X1

     I use a stock Bradley OBS and generally smoke for 4 hours. After that your Bradley is essentially an oven so depending on weather and my mood I may finish in the kitchen.

     The best advice you will ever get on preparing and smoking briskets is on the recipe site - look for the post there by WesTexaSmoker and especially the 4 posts by Pachanga (he is the go-to guy for brisket).
  WILL DO

We may be better able to offer suggestions if you provide a detail description of how you cook it, how long, and how you determine when you think it is done.

Middle rack at 225F, wrap around 160F-165F, smoking until then, until internal temp of 205F with remote maverick thermometer in the thickest part of the brisket, then resting for 1-2 hours in a towel in my microwave prior to slicing against the grain.

My injection contains olive oil and salt, but on the last one I cooked it not 20 minutes after the injection (due to realizing the salt may be curing/toughening the meat?) and I have yet to try another without salt in the injection. Rub has some salt, but I'm pretty sure that's not an issue...

Think it's the salt in the injection?

AND THANKS!!! I'll check out the recommended links for the next one.

 -Dan


Offline Rider14

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Re: Why can't I get a tender brisket?!?!
« Reply #12 on: August 21, 2015, 08:39:33 PM »
Resurrect - I've finally got consistent good results with my brisket. I have a 900watt element but no fan. I thought maybe I've been drying out the meat because of the direct heat. SO I started cooking fat side DOWN and it's made all the difference. Been good with both wrapping and cooking through.

I prefer the wrap because I like having the au jus...

Anyway, thought I'd share. Fat side down in a Bradley smoker made the difference for me.

Been using a mix of hickory and cherry and even got a smoke ring somehow!