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Any BBQ'ers out there? BBQ Brisket = FAIL

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  • Any BBQ'ers out there? BBQ Brisket = FAIL

    Nothing like a good TX style brisket cooked low and slow, I even get my rub from a place I went when I lived in Houston. I've done pretty good with the corn fed briskets but my attempt with a grass fed brisket was a failure. I think it may just be too lean.

    I set my pit to 215 and pulled the brisket after about 16hrs at an internal temp of 181. I was going to go for 185 but as it was I almost had jerkey. I did a corn fed last week and pulled it a about 190 and it came out fine.

    My thoughts:
    Forgot to brush with olive oil before putting on the rub, not sure how much this would have helped.

    Next time shoot for a lower internal temp, since I can always leave it on longer but I can't undo the damage of overcooking.

    Anyone have any thoughts?

    I'm going to post this on some BBQ forums I belong to also.

    Thanks!
    CG99

  • #2
    CG99, you obviously know what you're doing. I smoke a lot of meat and opened this thread sure to give you an easy answer, but you're just going to have to experiment a little with the temps. Grass fed brisket may benefit from a few hours in foil like some serious smokers do their ribs. Just a thought.

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    • #3
      Lately I've been doing Texas style dry rubbed beef ribs instead of brisket but yeah, the grass-fed stuff overcooks a lot faster. I never put olive oil on it but I don't trim any fat off the cap when I do brisket. Usually I'll preheat it in the over at 150 just to get the surface fat to melt a little and then I put the dry rub on. Throughout the smoking process I never go above 250 and on average I'd say that the middle of the smoke box stays around 200. Last time I did it I only left it on for 12 hours and then wrapped it in foil and let it rest for a half hour. It was perfect...nice smoke ring and everything.

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      • #4
        Why did you go for such a high interal temp?

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        • #5
          Well, I usually cook my Briskets to a much higher internal temperature than I cook a steak just like cancerguy did his but thats usually because it takes that much for a Brisket to start to break down and not be tough!

          However, I am guessing his was so lean that it ended up being overkill. If you are going to keep smoking with those lean cuts, I suggest taking it off about an hour or two before it would normally be finished, wrap it up in foil tightly with a splash of apple juice, and then set it in a closed ice chest for the remainder of its cooking time. This will really help loosen it up.

          edit: This is how I also do my ribs... 3 hours smoke, 2 hours sitting in foil with some apple juice, 1 final hour of smoke.

          The same principal can be applied to a brisket, just modify the times accordingly!

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          • #6
            That's WAY too high of a temperature as your "jerky" observation confirms. I don't need to have ever done a brisket to know that!

            THE very best website on all things grilling is www.amazingribs.com .

            I've developed a no-added-sugar-no-fructose rich, robust BBQ sauce. I'll post it if folks want. Family and friends want me to cook ribs whenever they visit.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by OnTheBayou View Post
              That's WAY too high of a temperature as your "jerky" observation confirms. I don't need to have ever done a brisket to know that!

              THE very best website on all things grilling is www.amazingribs.com .

              I've developed a no-added-sugar-no-fructose rich, robust BBQ sauce. I'll post it if folks want. Family and friends want me to cook ribs whenever they visit.
              I'd like that recipe, please.
              ~Sandy

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              • #8
                stockjohn and Rivvin - you guys are right on, I set my BBQ Guru to a grate temp of 210 with the probe close to the brisket, most BBQ'ers will recommend an internal temp of 185 to start checking for 'doneness'. I cook on a Big Green Egg and I did pull it and let it rest in foil for about an hour. I don't usually add anything but the dry rub for corn fed brisket. Looks like I'm going to have to alter for grass fed. Maybe even inject it. It turned out that there was vaery little marbeling and most of the fat was on the outside.

                OnTheBayou - This is one of the people I borrow suggestions from http://playingwithfireandsmoke.blogs...3/brisket.html
                I also use advice from ElderWard. 185 - 195 is not too high a temp for a fatty brisket, you have to break down the fat. for a not so fatty grass fed, it ws too high. IF I try again I'll shoot for 175 but I may just stick with the corn fed for my briskets and do some thing more Primal for my pork shoulders.

                I'm going to check in with the BBQ Brethren and see if anyone over there has experience with grass fed.

                Thanks for the tips folks, keep them coming.
                CG99

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                • #9
                  Buy this book by Stanley Fishman (ironic last name) Tender Grassfed Meat: Traditional Ways To Cook Healthy Meat it covers a multitude of ways to cook grass fed beef.

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                  • #10
                    Thanks, I'll check it out. I hope to one day be as good at cooking the grass fed as I am the corn. Not that I can take my show on the road.


                    Originally posted by PMAC View Post
                    Buy this book by Stanley Fishman (ironic last name) Tender Grassfed Meat: Traditional Ways To Cook Healthy Meat it covers a multitude of ways to cook grass fed beef.

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                    • #11
                      I bought a 3.5 pound brisket yesterday. Its not 100% grassfed but it comes from a very good local ranch that's pretty small. I hope this means its a little fattier. I'm going to try to smoke it today or tomorrow. Have you tried again cancer guy? I don't want to screw up a $20 hunk of meat. You said you were going to check with some BBQ forums. Any luck?
                      Last edited by stockjohn; 07-10-2010, 08:31 AM.

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                      • #12
                        a chef friend of mine who does a ton of bbq told me that with grassfed brisket I should cook it to an internal temp of 210. Seems counterintuitive but he said that since over 12 hours of smoking you're squeezing out all the juice anyway, you need to keep bringing the temp up slowly so that the collagen breaks down fully...this is what makes good bbq tender, according to him. My brisket definitely doesn't look as fatty as a cornfed one so I'm going to roll the dice and give his advice a shot. I'll let you know how it goes. Here's what I'm doing:

                        - 3.5 lb. brisket, dry rubbed
                        - 4 hours in smoke at 285 - 300
                        - 8 hours in a 290 degree oven, wrapped in foil (I don't feel like standing by the pit all day so I'm cheating)

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                        • #13
                          One more thought to save time and money. Start your brisket at 175 in your house oven in a large walled tray but inside an oven bag. Put your brisket in this bag and roast in the oven for as long as your thermometer says and you are comfortable....then take outside and finish off with the high dollar wood smoke fire. Its been my experience that any time on the BBQ grill (smoker) over two or so hours makes the taste indistinguishable from those done wholly outdoors. Fat side up always. Wrap the cooked meat in foil and leave on the smoker for the last hour. Then and only then bring it in and trim fat off the back, slice and serve.
                          They used to call me No Neck, but now I have one.

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                          • #14
                            That probably would have been a good way to go. I really overdid it. After a few hours on the smoker I left it in a 250 degree oven and went out for the day. When I got back it looked and smelled great but when I went to slice it it pretty much fell apart. Tastes good but the consistency (mush) is pretty unappetizing. It also shrank a whole lot. What started out at a 3.5 lb. piece of meat only seems to be around 3 servings now. Oh well....next time I'm going to keep the heat closer to 200 the whole time...

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                            • #15
                              http://www.virtualweberbullet.com/index.html

                              Lots of advice here on cooking brisket....

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