Author Topic: Super Bowl Half Brisket?  (Read 655 times)

Offline st3v32k12

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Super Bowl Half Brisket?
« on: January 13, 2017, 01:16:05 pm »
I want to add smoked brisket to my Super Bowl menu but I have no idea how many people will be showing up.  Since there are a LOT of other choices I would like to ask:

My butcher will gladly provide me with a half brisket but is this even feasible?  Is this common?  I think a whole brisket would be overkill and result in a LOT of left-overs (not necessarily a bad thing, but with all the other food we might be looking at too much left overs). 

How would the butcher even cut this as a brisket is roughly rectangular in shape... would you suggest using the point or the flat, or cutting right down the middle.

Or is this not worth doing and one should always do a full brisket?

Offline RedJada

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Re: Super Bowl Half Brisket?
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2017, 02:41:50 pm »
 In your case the flat should be fine. But you might find out the brisket goes first.  ;D ;D ;D

Offline st3v32k12

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Re: Super Bowl Half Brisket?
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2017, 09:59:02 am »
Has anyone here ever done this, or does this on a regular basis and has any suggestions or tips?

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Super Bowl Half Brisket?
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2017, 01:28:13 pm »
If you are referring to smoking flats, that is mainly what I cook because it is mainly the only part of the brisket I can purchase in my area. The size of a flat can range from 4lbs to around 7lbs.

I generally will season with kosher salt, rough ground pepper, and some granulated garlic. I trim the fat down to about 1/8" - 1/4", season the meat about an hour before placing it in the smoker. Preheat the smoker to about 250°F, place the flat in the smoker, and cook at 225°F - 250°F, until an internal meat temperature of 160°F - 165°F. Remove from smoker and tightly foil with heavy duty aluminum foil. Before sealing add some beef broth or water. I then check when it gets to  190°F; by using the fork test. If a fork is easily inserted and removed, then it is done. If not I will continue to cook, and check every 5 degrees, but you generally don't have to go above 205°F. Unfoil and allow to rest at least 30 minutes, and slice thinly across the grain of the meat.

The time when it will be done can be unpredictable. Most will cook a day ahead, or will start several hour earlier than they expect it to be done. Look up FTC; which is one method of holding your brisket at a safe temperature until it can be served.


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Offline st3v32k12

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Re: Super Bowl Half Brisket?
« Reply #4 on: January 20, 2017, 01:12:23 pm »
That was an awesome answer with tons of great tips.  If you'll indulge me I'd like to ask a few followup questions:

1) How long should I smoke for?
2) Does it matter at what point I smoke at (beginning, middle, or end)?
3) I understand that every brisket is different, but what sort of time should I plan for if I was just cooking the flat?  What sort of time should I plan for if I was cooking the point?

Thanks again for your awesome answer.

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Super Bowl Half Brisket?
« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2017, 01:46:54 pm »
Most of the time I can only get flats. When I do get a whole brisket I will cook it in one of my charcoal cookers. So I don't have any experience smoking/cooking points.

For the Bradley, start smoking at the beginning of the cook. I generally will apply 4 hours of pecan or oak. There is evidence that once the surface of the meat reaches 140°F, smoke will no longer penetrate the meat. Although, as long as the surface is moist, smoke will continue to adhere to the surface of the meat.

The rule of thumb for tough cuts of meat like brisket, pork shoulder etc.; when cooking at 200°F - 250°F guesstimate about 1.5 hours per pound - but a lot depends on how fast your Bradley recovers and gets up to your set temperature. If you foil when the brisket reaches around 160°F, you shave some time off the total time.

I cook by temperature, time, internal temperature, and doness.


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Offline st3v32k12

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Re: Super Bowl Half Brisket?
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2017, 01:33:30 pm »
When wrapping in foil, do you A) remove the temperature probe, wrap the entire brisket and then pierce the foil with the temperature probe or B) wrap the entire brisket in foil with the temperature probe still in it and try to wrap around the probe and try to get the best possible seal?

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Super Bowl Half Brisket?
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2017, 01:40:25 am »
I use method "A". Instead of using only foil you can use a disposable foil pan. Place the brisket in a foil pan, add liquid, cover the top with foil then reinsert the probe. Using a foil pan is much more convenient.


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Offline st3v32k12

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Re: Super Bowl Half Brisket?
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2017, 08:32:43 am »
Wow.  Just complete and total Wow!  Thanks so much for the great tips!

I ended up with a 5.5 lbs flat that had about 1/4 - 1/8 inch fat on it so I left it as is.  I seasoned with salt and pepper only and put it on at 6:00AM at around 225F with 4 hours of smoke.  Took it out at 165F and put it in a aluminum pan wrapped in foil with some water.  Easily went up to 190F at which point it started to drop.  Since this was around 2PM I resisted to urge to fiddle with it because I had read all about the stall and I was determined not to let it beat me.

Turns out I made a rookie mistake and the timer on the over had ended so it had turned off.  I quickly turned it back on and added tons of time.

That mistake might have robbed the meat of some juiciness as it was not perfect but 95% there.  I was very happy with the results - alas no pictures this time - and I'm looking forward to perfecting my technique with different rubs.

I think I may have added too much water to the aluminum pan as well (1/2 cup) as it there was quite a bit of water left over when it was done, not sure if that would cause any issues...

All in all very happy with the results, thanks again all for the tips!!

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Super Bowl Half Brisket?
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2017, 01:08:20 pm »
I'm glad to read about your success. If I'm 85% close to perfection with my brisket, I'm totally satisfied. When foiling, or using a pan you will have a lot of juices and fat. Many as well as myself will separate the fat from the juices and you can pour that over the sliced brisket, or make an au jus from it. When you use the juices in this manner it is better to add a low sodium beef broth to the foil pan instead of water.


     I
         don't
                   inhale.
  ::)