Monday, April 29, 2013

Smoked Brisket!!!!!!!!!!

Making this brisket was incredibly fun for me. It combined several of my favorite types of cooking: cooking an enormous piece of meat, cooking with exciting equipment, and cooking for a group of appreciative happy people. We made a total of 32 pounds of brisket to celebrate my wonderful and sweet brother-in-law's 27th birthday. We had people over for a backyard BBQ and the meat ALL got eaten. Any crowd that gets so excited for bbq is good people.
Also: it came out so, so good. People were slicing off chunks and eating them plain with their fingers. Absolutely fantastic. The whole night made me feel like it was already summer (different story this morning at 6, when I had to struggle my butt to work).
First I had to go shopping for gigantic meats. I had seen full briskets in the grocery before and stroked them kind of wishfully, thinking of how fun it would be to cook something so huge. But then my logical mind would say: that is way too much meat, even for you. So I would walk away and find something less awesome to cook. I have been wanting to make one of these for a long time.
But then I couldn't find any! All the stores just had smaller pieces of brisket. I went to 4 stores and finally found these at a King Soopers nearly in Aurora.
How big were these meats?
Bigger than a Chihuahua!
These were 16lbs each, so they had to be cut in half in order to fit in the smoker. Look at that fat distribution! That's why they came out so juicy.

We got this smoker last summer. We have been experimenting with it and some things have been more successful than others. This was by far the best thing we've made with it yet.
A smoker going in the backyard on a Sunday means life is good.
The Recipe

Enormous brisket(s). I used two 16 lb briskets. These come whole in a plastic wrap.
1.5 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup table salt
1/4 cup garlic powder
1/4 cup chile powder
1/4 cup onion powder
2 TB mustard powder
2 TB cayenne

What to do
Make the rub by combining salt, sugar and spices.

Rub the brisket all over with the rub. Get as much to stick on as you can. Let the briskets sit with the rub on for a few hours or overnight.
Then, put it in the smoker for hours. 12 hours would be best. You want the smoker to stay between 200 and 250. I use three wood chips--try to space them far from the heating coils so they don't catch and flame.
We checked it every half hour or so--if it got too hot we unplugged it. This is a great excuse to sit in your backyard all day drinking beer.
One of the briskets smoking. The thick end is on top. My theory was that the fattier piece would drip down onto the leaner piece and keep it juicy. 
After all those hours of smoking, turn your oven all the way up and blast it for about 10 to 15 minutes to get a nice char on the outside. This might set off your smoke alarm or cause grease fires--both happened to me.
Finished brisket. 

This was a fantastic night in the backyard--great food, excellent company, all dogs stayed out of the pond, and we killed a whole batch of homebrew (rye pale ale).
Looking forward to a summer of smoked meat and yard games!


  1. I want to eat 100 more pounds of your awesome brisket!! However, I think the people in my lecture today were none too pleased with the GI situation your amazing cooking caused. xoxoxox.

  2. I know--we had rough mornings over here too.

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