National Smoke Day

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National Smoke Day

Postby Lord_Byron » Sun May 27, 2012 8:23 am

Did anyone do any smoking yesterday? I'm doing a brisket tomorrow, so I passed this year.

This is my first attempt at brisket. I got a flat only(about 7 lbs), not a whole brisket. I'm going to do an overnight "paste rub" and put it on in the morning. Any suggestions on avoiding dry meat would be appreciated. I'll probably leave it on the smoke until it gets to about 150 or so, and then spray and wrap in foil for the remainder of the cook.

I'm concerned about the hot weather tomorrow, since I think the direct sun adds about 100 degrees to the smoker. I'll light fewer coals than usual when I fire up the WSM. I usually use about 18 briquettes to get about 240, so I'll probably go with 12 or 15.



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Re: National Smoke Day

Postby Pete Segaard » Sun May 27, 2012 8:47 am

I didn't know it was National Smoke Day, but I got lucky and put on a fresh picnic and a brisket flat also.
The flat I bought came cryo wrapped and had plenty of fat on it. Both stayed in the smoker for 13 hours and the toes of the flat started to dry out but the thicker portion was just starting to render out well.

I usually don't baste beef in the smoker but it probably would have helped the brisket.
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Re: National Smoke Day

Postby hammb » Tue May 29, 2012 12:22 pm

I had birthday parties on Sunday & Monday this weekend so I didn't get to smoke on either of those days. I did, however, get to fire up the smoker for my annual Memorial Day Weekend summer kickoff event. I always have friends over for ribs one of the days of Memorial Weekend, and we did it on Saturday this year. I invited a few more people so I grabbed a full brisket from Belleville's as well.

This was my 2nd attempt at a brisket and it was fantastically good..I can't even begin to talk about how awesome it turned out. I made a paste rub out of fresh garlic, fresh thyme, salt, pepper, and olive oil. I rubbed it down and let it marinate in that for a few hours (might have benefited from more time, but I didn't pick up the meat until Friday evening). I put it on the smoker around 11:30 Friday night and smoked it overnight with hickory smoke (minion method on the WSM like you, Byron). Was a comfortable smoke and with the high temps had no issues at all sitting where I wanted it.

It did get done quicker than I hoped for though (reached 185-190* at 1:30 in the afternoon, planning to eat at 6). So I dumped a couple gallons of boiling water into a cooler at 1 (I noticed it was close to done), dumped the water out at 1:30, then I put layers of towels in the cooler, wrapped the brisket in foil and another towel, and placed it in the cooler. I pulled it out at 6 and it was still perfect serving temperature and sliced into some of the juiciest most tender brisket I've ever had. It was some of the best 'Q I've ever made.

To go along with it I put 2 racks of spares on at noon, and 2 racks of baby backs on at 1. Those got rubbed with my usual rib rub (Mike Mills's Magic Dust) and finished with Mills's Apple City BBQ Sauce. The Ribs were fantastic as well, but the brisket was the star of the show.

This cook really helped to cement my belief that brisket is my favorite BBQ and if I'm the one cooking them I prefer spares to baby backs. But all of the meat was a hit, and it just furthered my belief that BBQ is one of the best foods on the planet when done right...and it's nearly impossible to do better than what you can do in your own back yard.

One thing I found with brisket is if you're just doing flats make sure they're not taking too much fat off. When I did my first brisket awhile back the store where I bought it had the fat almost completely gone. I think the results are MUCH better if you go to a meat market and have them trim it to your exact specifications. If you're in the BG area Belleville's is (AFAIC) some of the best beef you'll find. They only charged $3.49/lb for a whole brisket, and they trimmed it while I was there exactly how I asked. And I got the trimmed fat as well to use for something (not sure what, yet).
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Re: National Smoke Day

Postby Lord_Byron » Tue May 29, 2012 12:53 pm

Sounds great, Hammb. How big was your brisket?

As I had feared, the flat (6.5 lbs) dried out a little, probably should have pulled it off at about 185 degrees, but I let it go to 195. I had about a 1/4" fat layer on it, but that didn't do much to keep it moist. Used a "wet rub" using a recipe from the Virtual Bullet website and let it marinate overnight -- the flavor was good.

I'm going to do a whole brisket next time--the princess had a burnt-end sandwich last summer, and wants me to make her one.

To go along with the brisket, I grilled some shrimp. I got some 6-8 count size (17 shrimp in two pounds) shell on already deveined. I simply tossed with Old Bay about an hour before I put them on over high-heat charcoal. Two minutes on a side and they came out great!

I've actually been talking to Lady Byron about getting an outside cooking island built. That way I can store all my stuff right by the grill and smoker and have a place to work and have drinks while we hang out. I'm still designing what I want, but I'm pretty sure I want a stainless steel top for easy cleaning, no staining.
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Re: National Smoke Day

Postby hammb » Tue May 29, 2012 1:25 pm

Lord_Byron wrote:Sounds great, Hammb. How big was your brisket?

As I had feared, the flat (6.5 lbs) dried out a little, probably should have pulled it off at about 185 degrees, but I let it go to 195. I had about a 1/4" fat layer on it, but that didn't do much to keep it moist. Used a "wet rub" using a recipe from the Virtual Bullet website and let it marinate overnight -- the flavor was good.

I'm going to do a whole brisket next time--the princess had a burnt-end sandwich last summer, and wants me to make her one.

To go along with the brisket, I grilled some shrimp. I got some 6-8 count size (17 shrimp in two pounds) shell on already deveined. I simply tossed with Old Bay about an hour before I put them on over high-heat charcoal. Two minutes on a side and they came out great!

I've actually been talking to Lady Byron about getting an outside cooking island built. That way I can store all my stuff right by the grill and smoker and have a place to work and have drinks while we hang out. I'm still designing what I want, but I'm pretty sure I want a stainless steel top for easy cleaning, no staining.



The whole brisket was about 10 1/2 pounds. I had them trim the fat cap down to about 1/4" across the board. That cut it down to about 9-9 1/2 pounds. When I pulled mine it was between 180-190 all around. I think wrapping and letting it rest for so long probably helps the juices redistribute and everything too.

I kept the brisket whole, so I didn't do the burnt ends thing. That point is REALLY fatty, but dammmmn is it TASTY!

An outdoor kitchen setup like that is something that I BADLY want. I don't know about Stainless countertops outside though. I'd be afraid that if they were in the sun they would get scorching hot. My dream outdoor set up includes an outdoor countertop with recesses for my WSM, my Kettle, and I suppose a gasser as well. If we're truly dreaming a woodfired pizza oven would be icing on the cake.

Right now I always set up my portable tailgating tables when I'm cooking outdoors, but I'd love to have a more permanent countertop setup.
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Re: National Smoke Day

Postby Pete Segaard » Tue May 29, 2012 2:25 pm

hammb wrote:
The whole brisket was about 10 1/2 pounds. I had them trim the fat cap down to about 1/4" across the board. That cut it down to about 9-9 1/2 pounds. When I pulled mine it was between 180-190 all around. I think wrapping and letting it rest for so long probably helps the juices redistribute and everything too.

I kept the brisket whole, so I didn't do the burnt ends thing. That point is REALLY fatty, but dammmmn is it TASTY!

An outdoor kitchen setup like that is something that I BADLY want. I don't know about Stainless countertops outside though. I'd be afraid that if they were in the sun they would get scorching hot. My dream outdoor set up includes an outdoor countertop with recesses for my WSM, my Kettle, and I suppose a gasser as well. If we're truly dreaming a woodfired pizza oven would be icing on the cake.

Right now I always set up my portable tailgating tables when I'm cooking outdoors, but I'd love to have a more permanent countertop setup.


You might as well build a purgola over the cooking center and have hop bines growing over to provide shade. :drinkers:
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Re: National Smoke Day

Postby h2oville rocket » Wed May 30, 2012 1:27 pm

I fired up this giant spliff and was about halfway through when my wife explained the whole thing to me- by then I was too far gone to cook.
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Re: National Smoke Day

Postby Lord_Byron » Wed Jul 25, 2012 8:16 am

hammb wrote:An outdoor kitchen setup like that is something that I BADLY want. I don't know about Stainless countertops outside though. I'd be afraid that if they were in the sun they would get scorching hot. My dream outdoor set up includes an outdoor countertop with recesses for my WSM, my Kettle, and I suppose a gasser as well. If we're truly dreaming a woodfired pizza oven would be icing on the cake.

Right now I always set up my portable tailgating tables when I'm cooking outdoors, but I'd love to have a more permanent countertop setup.


I've been looking around on this, and I think I'm going to try this:

http://www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/how-to/ ... 84,00.html

I'll make two of the 48" bases and tie them together without dropping in the grill in the center. I'll have a concrete slab poured and then anchor and build the unit on top of that.

Now, it's just a matter of getting motivated and doing it. If I get the slab poured this year, I can do the construction in the spring.
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