Forum saves Brisket! was: Emergency brisket help! PICS!

FJ Abraham

TVWBB Fan
UPDATE: Thanks to everyone who chimed in and saved me! The brisket actually came out better than any I've done. I would have preferred it be slightly more juicy but it was NOT dry. The smoke ring was pronounced. I ended up foiling at 12 hrs (170) and then cooking another 2 hrs. Amazingly, despite my early suspicions, the flat was tender and very flavorful. A Couple pics.






OK, something is NOT right!

Put a 12 lb. packer about 3 hrs ago and the internal temp is already 160. I'm assuming this is not right, if I foil now I don't see how it's going to take another 9 hrs to reach 185 or so.

The smoker has been running near 250, which is hotter than I like but I still don't understand this internal temp.

Should I be concerned or is this normal?
 

Bryan S

TVWBB Olympian
You prob don't have your probe dead center in the brisket. Instead of putting the probe in from top to bottom and trying to judge dead center, put it in from the side and push it into the middle. This way you know it's in the center of the brisket. Also remember you want to measure the temp in the flat not the point since the flat will finish long before the point. HTH
 

FJ Abraham

TVWBB Fan
hanks Bryan,

I did make sure to probe in the flat and from the side. To double check I tested again with my Thermapen, got the same reading.

I'm getting worried that supper will be a bust.
 

Bryan S

TVWBB Olympian
Hmmm, that seems way too fast. You still have the plateau to go through but... 160 in 3 hrs. Is the flat very thin on your packer? Your 250 temp. Is that at the lid or the top grate, and how/what are you using to measure that?
 

FJ Abraham

TVWBB Fan
The flat is typical, over an inch at it's thinnest, but mostly quite thick.

Temp is top grate, Nu-temp probe through eyelet. I've since dropped the temp to the lower 220s'
 

Bryan S

TVWBB Olympian
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by FJ Abraham:
The flat is typical, over an inch at it's thinnest, but mostly quite thick.

Temp is top grate, Nu-temp probe through eyelet. I've since dropped the temp to the lower 220s' </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
Very odd indeed. Well I have 2 of the NU-701's and love em, been very reliable over the years except when I get water into where the wire goes into the probe. They don't take too well to dropping them into a sink full of water.
FJ, not sure what to tell you other than no 2 cooks are alike so... Just remember that this is not a typical packer cook, and your next packer cook will prob be a marathon event.
 

FJ Abraham

TVWBB Fan
Thanks Bryan,

It's a bit depressing as it looks now I'll be chucking the whole thing, it'll be like leather at this rate. I'm going to drop the cooker down below 200 and see how long I can hold the brisket below 180, then foil and hope for the best.
 

Bryan S

TVWBB Olympian
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by FJ Abraham:
Thanks Bryan,

It's a bit depressing as it looks now I'll be chucking the whole thing, it'll be like leather at this rate. I'm going to drop the cooker down below 200 and see how long I can hold the brisket below 180, then foil and hope for the best. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>
FJ, you would be better off foiling it at 165 and take the flat to just barely fork tender. Remove the brisket from the WSM and seperate the flat from the point and cool the flat down quickly. Return the point to the WSM to finish or make burnt ends out of it. Then just reheat the flat for dinner. That's you best option at this point IMO.
 

K Kruger

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by FJ Abraham:
Thanks Bryan,

It's a bit depressing as it looks now I'll be chucking the whole thing, it'll be like leather at this rate. I'm going to drop the cooker down below 200 and see how long I can hold the brisket below 180, then foil and hope for the best. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>If you drag the cook out by dropping the temps you'll have a good shot at 'leather'.

I'm not seeing the cause for concern here. Of course, I cook briskets much higher than 250 so were I to bother to temp I'd expect to see high internals quickly, but 160 in 3 hours at 250 doesn't warrant concern for me. Time is going to be required for rendering to occur and that will happen regardless--no adjustments to cooktemp required at all.

I'd leave it alone. When you see good indications that rendering has occured for a little while then foil it. Extending the cook by lowering the cooktemp is not at all necessary.
 

Dan H.

TVWBB Pro
these are these wierd post i've talked about... im just waiting for my turn... jimminy christmas... good luck and I agree w/ the above if it were me. I esp. double that your next cook will pry be a marathon, thats just how things seem to go w/ briskits... im cooking one right now, hope mine goes as planned
you got me wandering.
 

Scott H.

TVWBB Member
I have had a brisket on that is almost exactly the weight of yours for 14 hrs at 225, and it probably needs another hour or two to finish. This is by my feel, not by internal temp. The fat renders out of every brisket when it wants to, not when the thermometer or clock says to.
 

FJ Abraham

TVWBB Fan
Thanks everybody,

OK, it looks like things are going to be OK (well who knows, I won't know until I cut into it!).

I dropped the temp to the low 200s and the brisket seems to have plateaued at 165. I'm leaving in unfoiled for another hour and then I will foil and hope for the best.

Another question: I want to do some burnt ends but the point on this thing is huge and I can't see using the whole thing for it (would be an enormous amount). So what should I do? once the flat hits 185-190 (tender) I pull it and put it in the cooler. Should I separate the point then and keep cooking it or put it in the cooler with the point?
 

Craig Castille

TVWBB Wizard
Some keep the point on for another hour or so. Some will cook it with a little sauce, others do not.

Personally, I take the point off and save it for other uses when the brisket is done. Take the brisket off when it is fork or near fork tender. Internal temps may not tell you "done" accurately.

If you are going to keep the brisket in a holding cooler for a while, I would try to take the brisket off at "near fork tender" as residual cooking may still take place.

When I take off at fork tender, I'll let the brisket sit tented with foil and draped with a heavy towel to let rest for a half hour or so.


Good luck.
 

Bryan S

TVWBB Olympian
FJ, Looks like it turned out pretty darn good. So glad to hear you didn't give up on it.
Next time foil at 160, should yield a more moist flat for you.
 

FJ Abraham

TVWBB Fan
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Originally posted by Bryan S:
FJ, Looks like it turned out pretty darn good. So glad to hear you didn't give up on it.
Next time foil at 160, should yield a more moist flat for you.
</div></BLOCKQUOTE>

Thanks for all your help Bryan. Will do on the foiling next time.
 

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