A brisket is conventionally one of the hardest cuts of meat to prepare. With that being said it’s probably also the most delicious piece of meat you will ever taste, and every second of work you put into this recipe is worth it times a million and a half! It can be a challenging dish for newbies to prepare so before referring to this recipe, try practicing your hand on pre-formed burger patties and hot dogs. Now if you’re way past that and ready to step into the world of true BBQ; this recipe is for you.
How to Smoke a Brisket on a Pellet Smoker
Choosing your meat: Your brisket should be tender a floppy in your hand when it’s uncooked, rather than stiff and hard. Make sure that the piece of meat is evenly marbled so that it can absorb the fat and make the brisket succulent.
Trimming: Any pre-packaged meat that you get from a retail store is likely to have a liberal amount of fat on it. Grab a sharp boning knife and trim off the excess fat to around 1/8 to ¼ inch, depending on how much fat you like in your meat. Trimming is extremely important because while fat enhances the taste of the meat and makes it soft, juicy and tender; it can also easily overpower the actual taste of the brisket and be alarmingly unhealthy.
Seasoning: Every family has a different spice-mix that they prefer to rub on their brisket. Some people like it hotter than the average and some want it to be a burst of different flavours. However, if you’re new and do not hold any such opinions, here is a standard seasoning rub that’ll work just fine.
- Coarse salt (2 tbsp)
- Fresh cracked black pepper (2 tsp)
- Paprika (2 tsp)
- Cayenne pepper (1 tsp)
- Dried oregano leaves (1 tsp)
- Ground cumin (1/2 tsp)
- Granulated garlic (1 tsp)
Massage the spice mixture gently into the meat on both sides. Be sure to cover the meat generously on both sides but don’t go overboard or it will mask the taste of the meat.
Pre-cooking: While the marinade soaks into the meat, preheat your pellet grill to 250 degrees.
Smoking your brisket: The best way to cook your meat is to do it slow and steady. If you cook it in a rush, you can easily mess this up. After you preheat your grill, cook the meat till the internal temperature of the meat is 160 degrees. Since the cooking time for this recipe is quite high, it makes it hard to smoke the meat on a fire because smoking it correctly is more concerned with the temperature of the fire, rather than the cooking time. So for beginners, who are desperate to get this dish right in the first try, use a well-reputed pellet smoker source. Just set your thermometer to the desired temperature you want your meat to reach and the burning pellets will automatically create the optimal amount of fire!
Wrapping & Stalling: After reaching the 160-degree mark, the meat needs to be taken off the grill (or your pellet smoker) and kept aside for a resting period. This is called a stall. It is really important to let the meat stall so that it can release its juices and become tender, otherwise, it will just dry out and taste weird. Wrap the meat in aluminium foil and leave it for a few hours.
Resting: Remove the meat from the heat again when it reaches 190-205 degrees and wrap it (if you haven’t already) in foil or butcher paper. Let it rest for at least an hour so the juices settle in the meat.
Carving: When you un-wrap your meat it should have a dark brown crust and the meat should be firm enough to hold itself but fall apart when bitten into. Cut it into ¼ inch slices and serve!