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Brisket Question

DynaGreaseballDynaGreaseball Posts: 1,409
edited 6:52AM in EggHead Forum
Morning, Eggers,

While I'm waiting on my egg to get up to temp for a 7 lb brisket, thought I'd come into the forum for a little last minute hand-holding.

Will a brisket go through a temperature plateau, like pork? I plan to cook at 250° dome, indirect, for about 10 hours. Got a Maverick, and will check for 200° with my Thermapen.



  • The short answer is yes but there are a lot better brisket cooks that I am sure will jump in to help you out.

    Lazydog B)
  • I think at 250 dome, your brisket will very likely be in a plateau at about 10 hours. I recently did two 7 pounders @ 250 dome. They plateaued for at least 2 hours, maybe 3. My 2 briskets took 16 & 17 hours.

    FYI, I spoke with an egger that competes, judges and cooks ALOT. He said he does all his briskets @ 300 dome, and they take 10-12 hours. He's probably doing 10-12 pounders. I'm not saying to do this, just more info for you to weigh.
    Have fun, Scott
  • FidelFidel Posts: 10,172
    I like to do my briskets at a bit lower dome temp - about 240. They will plateau. Depending on the fat content - they can plateau for a long, long time. I've had some even drop 3-4 degrees once they hit that magic area and take 4-5 hours to break free and rise again.

    At 7 pounds I am assuming you have a flat only, so your plateau should not be that long, but could still be a couple hours - give or take.

    Even at 250, 10 hours is pushing it. I think brisket is better when it has at least 2 hours to rest in foil. If you want to speed things along, after that brisket breaks the plateau and starts to rise to 170 and above, double wrap it in foil and it will speed merrily along to 195 and beyond. You can cut a couple hours off your cook time by wrapping. I do not like to wrap it before it breaks the plateau because you don't want to rush the magic.

    Most importantly, check it for tenderness in addition to temperature. 195 may not be tender. Use the fork method - insert and twist. You will know if it is good and tender. It doesn't hurt to take brisket to 200 and above if it needs it.

    Also, let it rest as I mentioned above and whatever you do - do not slice that sucker until the minute you are ready to serve. Sliced brisket dries out in minutes.

    You've got my email - ping me if you need me ****. I'll give you a cell phone if you want so I can talk you off the ledge if things turn for the worse.
  • OK Great, I'll drop it to 240°. When I made shoe leather out of the last one I cooked, I remember that not being patient was my second biggest problem. The first big problem was the quality of the meat. This time I got a choice cut from my favorite BBQ restaurant.

    The brisket is kinda big for my medium egg. I'll probably toast the ends that hang over the edge of the platesetter. Maybe foiling will cut down on that some.
    I started timing at 8:00 this morning. Guess I won't plan on brisket for supper tonight. Maybe a mid night snack.

    Thanks for the support.
  • Fidel,
    Is that a left handed brisket?
    Did you read the post a while back with the link to the article that discussed left and right handed briskets? I have been buying the left handed ones since reading the article but can't say for sure if it has made a difference. Need to cook 2 side by side to compare.

  • Let us know how the "choice" cut works out for you.
  • Yeah, I wish I had an egg big enough to try one of those monster packer cuts.
  • FidelFidel Posts: 10,172
    I've been reading about that for quite some time. I really don't know how you can fairly assess the accuracy unless you had both briskets from the same animal and could cook them in the same egg at the same time. Otherwise there are too many variables to produce valid conclusive results. I would think you would have to repeat the process with 2 briskets from many animals to verify your results.

    I don't know if I buy it. If one side of the brisket is less used than the other, then doesn't it logically follow that one chuck would be used less? I personally don't get it, but would never want to argue the fact with the pitmasters that believe in it.
  • thirdeyethirdeye Posts: 7,428
    That was a well thought out, and very good reply.
    Happy Trails

    Barbecue is not rocket surgery
  • FidelFidel Posts: 10,172
    Don't worry about those ends, the brisket will shrink up enough to compensate. And if the thinner end does get crispy - cube it up and make some burnt ends. You won't be sorry.

    It's hard to tell with the rub applied, but are you cooking it fat down?
  • thirdeyethirdeye Posts: 7,428
    I know the article you are speaking about. It leaves out one important detail, whether the point is close to your body or away from it when determining the direction of curve.....Here is a picture that clarifies a lefty. Were you still picking one??

    Happy Trails

    Barbecue is not rocket surgery
  • Thanks for the picture again. I didn't notice but you are correct, it does matter the position. For some reason, I guess I understood it correctly though. Been buying the right (left side) side since I have read the page but the real key is buying choice meat. The easiest place to find choice briskets around here is Costco.
  • Yes, the fat side is down. It's a nice 1/8 inch to 1/4 inch layer. I'm using Dizzy Pig Raising the Steaks and a tad bit of John Henry's Pecan rub. The Pecan has some sugar in it.
  • I guess I have a left hand brisket. Is that good? I'm not sure I trust left-handed cows!
  • That is one fine lookin' saloon and egg table/cabinet.
  • Thanks! I was on the design team but a friend deserves the credit for the work. He goes by One-Ton but I am not sure he has made the jump from the old site yet.

    Lazydog B)
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