Sunday, June 19, 2011

Brisket 101

I live in Austin, Texas.  Making a good brisket is a residency requirement, it's sort of like having big hair and drinking margaritas. I made a pretty decent roast beef when I arrived in Texas, it didn't cut it.  I have played with many briskets over the years, each one, I think, was better than the one before.  I'm all about experimenting.  I finally mastered a killer brisket a few years ago.  I make it as often as I can get away with it, I love it, it's my favorite brisket in town and it's sadly simple.  There are all sorts of people here in town making killer briskets but they have 2 page recipes from the 35 ingredient rub to the special wood you need to smoke 'em as well as the fact you have to babysit your grill to keep the smoke at the right temperature and direction.  Really, I shove mine in an oven and frankly I'd put mine up against any of them...and now I'm going to share with you.

Take 1 brisket, any size.  Here I find they range from about 10 lbs to 24 or so, this works with any size.  Rub it liberally with salt and pepper.  IF you have a favorite rub mix, do it.  I rubbed this one with salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder, cumin and smoked paprika.  IF you don't have a favorite, use loads of salt and pepper, trust me, it'll be delicious. 

Rub your giant hunk of untrimmed meat, cut a gash or two if you are feeling artsy fartsy, don't if you're not.  Put the brisket in a large pan and seal it TIGHTLY with tinfoil.  Heavy duty is best.  Be sure you seal this baby up. 

Put it in a 225 oven and go have a life.  In about 5 hours (or before you go to bed) pull it out, gently peel the corner back and pour out any liquid, there'll be loads.  Reseal it tightly and put it back in the oven.  This is going to be 24 hours from start to finish.

Here's the start and the finish!


Rip a hunk off the short end (this was a random piece that got particularly dark, check the bark!!  The fat gets crunchy and hard and the meat, oh the meat is so tender and juicy and delicious!


After 24 hours, turn the oven off, leave it in there, covered about an hour.  Pull it out and it'll have rested and be sliceable.  Use a sharp knife, this stuff is crazy tender juicy!

You can rip it apart or slice it


There are some things in life I do very well, this is one of them and now it's one of yours!


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