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Just got a smoker..need advice


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#81 Mackus

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Posted 05 July 2018 - 01:06 PM

Had my annual July 3rd party a couple days ago, in addition to the usual stuff, I made smoked lamb shoulder.  Bought a whole lamb shoulder from the grocery store, rubbed it with salt, pepper, rosemary, and tons of garlic, and then smoked it just like I would a pork shoulder.  This stuff was amazingly good, behind only brisket in terms of my favorites of the things I make on the smoker.


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#82 SportsGuy

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Posted 08 July 2018 - 11:19 AM

Smoked lamb? That’s interesting. Never thought of smoking lamb

#83 SportsGuy

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 04:45 PM

Smoking my first brisket this weekend.  Heres hoping it turns out well.


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#84 Mackus

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 04:55 PM

Whole brisket or just the flat?

Good luck! I think it's the best thing you'll ever make when it comes out perfect. Worst case is really tasty but dry, but fortunately sauce can help solve that problem.

I just smoked two this weekend, now in the freezer. Bringing them down to OBX for a big group vacation there starting next Saturday.

#85 SportsGuy

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 05:10 PM

I think its a whole brisket?

 

What do you use as a rub?  I keep seeing salt, pepper and garlic powder is all you need.

 

Yea, one thing I was reading is that if it turns out bad, make chili out of it.



#86 Mackus

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 05:30 PM

Does it way 4-6 lb and is uniformly about 2" thick or does is weigh 10-15 lb, has a narrow side and a huge thick side and about a 1/2" thick fat cap on one side?

I salt mine overnight before smoking. For a rub I put most black pepper but it also has some garlic powder, onion powder, rosemary powder, and ginger powder. Check out Amazing Ribs.com, basically I try to do everything that guy suggests. Salt and pepper alone would be fine (and is what Franklin BBQ does), so don't stress too much about the rub.

#87 SportsGuy

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 06:51 PM

I love that amazing ribs website.

It’s like 13lbs...bought it at Costco. Pretty sure it’s a whole brisket.

One thing I haven’t bothered looking up yet is if you need to brine it?
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#88 Mackus

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 07:16 PM

Oh yeah, thats a whole one. Way to go, so much better than the flat (and frankly, easier to cook since the fatter part is more forgiving).

You can "dry brine" it which is just salting it a day or so ahead of time. If you wanna mix the salt in with your rub, you can put it all on at that time. I usually just salt the night before, then rub when I take it out of the fridge before smoking.

I'm also a complete convert to the "smoke for a few hours, finish in sous vide" combo. Still get tons of smoke flavor, and the active time you have to pay attention is drastically reduced.

#89 SportsGuy

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 08:05 PM

I plan on smoking it and then finishing it in the oven overnight. Figure it will be a 15ish hour cook
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#90 Mackus

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 08:37 PM

I plan on smoking it and then finishing it in the oven overnight. Figure it will be a 15ish hour cook

 

That sounds like a good plan.  You're not getting any more smoke flavor into it once you hit the stall and wrap it in foil, anyways.  The ends on the flat side will be dry no matter what you do.  They just aren't thick enough to handle that long of a cook.  But that's why there are burnt end sandwiches!  Dice the really tough parts up, saute them in some butter, top with sauce, and put them on a bun.  Everything else slice against the grain.  The tricky part there is the flat and point grain runs in different directions, so when you slice it up, separate the two, and then slice against the grain on each (Amazingribs has great step-by-step instructions with photos).  I can't more highly recommend the utility of a good slicing knife for this task.  Has the length to make full cuts of the entire brisket and the sharpness to make clean slices without tearing off your bark.  Don't use a serrated bread knife for this or you'll end up with a bunch of shredded beef, if you don't have a slicer, just use a sharp chef's knife and break it down into smaller hunks to slice.  I have this one, only $35 and I use it all the time. 

 

I literally just smoked two whole briskets on Monday (5-6 hours each on smoker, then into sous vide for 36 hrs), and despite that, I'm physically jealous that you're smoking one and will get to eat it. A properly done brisket is a Mount Rushmore food for me.


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#91 SportsGuy

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 08:47 PM

That sounds like a good plan. You're not getting any more smoke flavor into it once you hit the stall and wrap it in foil, anyways. The ends on the flat side will be dry no matter what you do. They just aren't thick enough to handle that long of a cook. But that's why there are burnt end sandwiches! Dice the really tough parts up, saute them in some butter, top with sauce, and put them on a bun. Everything else slice against the grain. The tricky part there is the flat and point grain runs in different directions, so when you slice it up, separate the two, and then slice against the grain on each (Amazingribs has great step-by-step instructions with photos). I can't more highly recommend the utility of a good slicing knife for this task. Has the length to make full cuts of the entire brisket and the sharpness to make clean slices without tearing off your bark. Don't use a serrated bread knife for this or you'll end up with a bunch of shredded beef, if you don't have a slicer, just use a sharp chef's knife and break it down into smaller hunks to slice. I have this one, only $35 and I use it all the time.

I literally just smoked two whole briskets on Monday (5-6 hours each on smoker, then into sous vide for 36 hrs), and despite that, I'm physically jealous that you're smoking one and will get to eat it. A properly done brisket is a Mount Rushmore food for me.

Thanks for the tip.

Yea, we are getting together in the neighborhood for the Ravens game. Figured why not try it for the first time now?

Just spent $150 on a bunch of fall beers too..should be a good weekend.

Do you mop it when you cook? I do that for ribs. I assume you do it for brisket too?

#92 Mackus

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 08:52 PM

Do you mop it when you cook? I do that for ribs. I assume you do it for brisket too?

 

Nope, I don't do anything to it while it cooks.  I try not to even open the lid, although I have to in order to add more wood chunks and replace the water pan to keep it humid in there. 



#93 SportsGuy

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Posted 06 September 2018 - 08:59 PM

Ok thanks!

#94 SportsGuy

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Posted 08 September 2018 - 07:51 AM

Mackus..do you inject your brisket with beef broth
Or something like it?

#95 Mackus

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Posted 08 September 2018 - 09:44 AM

Mackus..do you inject your brisket with beef broth
Or something like it?

Yes. If I'm cooking it on the smoker/oven the whole time, I do. If I'm moving to sous vide after a few hours, I sometimes don't.

I think it helps keep the flat part moist. Not entirely necessary for the point. I just use beef broth, one 16 oz can per whole brisket, end up using about 75% of it. I try to find the low or no salt added stuff. Haven't tried any other type of injections like whatever fancy stuff the competition people use. It's a somewhat messy process, broth will spurt out of the meat a bit in places.
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