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First Brisket

Hi all! I've used this forum quite a bit to get started using my egg this summer, so I thought I'd share my methods and results from the main reason I bought the thing: BRISKET. I live in Milwaukee, but was born in TX. Good brisket is hard to come by up here, so I figured I better learn to do it myself...

I started with an 11.2-lb Choice packer from Sam's, and wet-aged it in the fridge for 30 days. It had a bit of an odor when I finally opened the cryovac on a Thursday evening, but nothing really appeared to be spoiled, and I trimmed off anything that didn't look appealing. I also performed the standard trimming of the hard fat around the point, and shaved down any high spots on the fat cap.

I then injected with a 1/3c Fab-B Lite to 1c water mixture. I learned the hard way that you should use hot water when combining, then stash in the fridge for a few hours. Otherwise, everything won't dissolve and you get a lumpy injection. I cooled it in an ice bath so that I could keep moving. The brisket then went into an XXL zip-top bag and sat in the fridge until the following evening.

Building the fire with the largest charcoal lumps at the bottom and gradually decreasing in size as you get to the top really has helped maintain steady temps during my long cooks. I found the 40-lb commercial bags of Nature-Glo lump for ~$20/bag, and it's been pretty good so far. I used cherry chunks for the smoke, and I spaced them in two levels while I was building the coal bed. I started the fire around midnight on Friday night, and used my DigiQ DX2 to set and stabilize the temp at 225F.

While the pit was heating, I rubbed with Meathead's Big Bad Beef Rub. I added a little more sugar and ancho powder to suit my taste, but overall a good starting point for a brisket rub. The fire was ready by 2 AM, so I slapped the meat on there, plugged in my meat probes (I also use a Maverick dual-probe remote thermometer so that I can keep an eye on temps when I'm away from the back porch), and went to bed.

We actually had some rain come through that night, so the pit got down to 216F, but was back up to 225F an hour later. By 12 PM Saturday, the meat was at 171F and stalling, so I wrapped it in foil and bumped the pit up to 250F. I was expecting company around 7 PM, and I wanted to have at least an hour or two of FTC time, hence the bump in temp. Around 200F internal, I started poking with an instant read just to test doneness, and it was like butter around 4:30 PM. I FTC'd, but left the fire going. Once the company arrived, I fully opened up all the dampers on the egg, removed the brisket from the cooler, and seared it for a few moments on both sides. After that, it was sliced and served.

Overall, very moist and tender. Good flavor, and I thought I'd never say it, but maybe a little too smoky. I had about 7 medium-sized cherry chunks in the fire, so I'll dial it back to 4 next time.

Hope you enjoy the pics below. Thanks to all who post and provide a wealth of knowledge to those of us getting started. I'm sure I'll continue to post as I run across any significant findings that I think may help the community.

Best,

Carl

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