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August 30th, 2020, 8:40 pm
* Abilene ** Abilene *
  • Joined: September 30th, 2019, 5:01 am
  • Posts: 2

Smoked two large beef plate ribs earlier this weekend (four bones each) on the top rack. Zero drama and very even temps throughout the smoke (damper pushed 3/4 in with a wide open chimney). Yesterday started a massive 20+ lb Wagyu brisket at 6 PM for a late lunch this afternoon. Was shooting for a 2 PM sit down with a one hour rest. From the start of the smoke it just got weird. I have two probes on either side of the grill to give me a general idea of temp at cook level. Set at 225- I was getting at 40 degree difference from one side to the other (versus a very small difference before loading the smoker and settling it down to temp. That was confirmed by the external thermometers which were frankly all over the place. The brisket was place fat side down, point facing the fire pit with the brisket placed as far from the fire pit as I could giving nice clearance from the far right wall. I thought this would even out in an hour, but after checking, I could not get the right side of the grill above 190 while the right probe said around 210 with the Yoder indicating 230 or so. I opened the damper to 50 percent. Right side no change, above the fire pit went up but then settled back down to 215 (Yoder set to 225). I decided to let it ride another 2 hours and back after three total hours in.

At three hours, I noticed that the massive middle of the point was beginning to gain temp faster than the far skinner flat. Never saw that before at this point in the cook (I had a total of four probes, two in the brisket, two on the cook rack). I tried all but closing the damper and leaving about two inches out, but this did nothing after two hours. I decided to simply go back to 50 percent and go to sleep. If there was an issue, I could wrap in the morning and sort that way.

7 am, the two sides still showed 28 degree difference in rack temp, but both the flat and point were close. In fact, closer than I had ever seen. Good news. I decided to ignore all the temps and simply cook on until one of the brisket thermometers hit 190 (normally I don’t wrap a Wagyu brisket til the end of the cook to rest- love the bark). Note that throughout the cook, I never opened the Yoder to look until the flat hit 190.

10 am I was somewhat slower than I wanted to be so I put up the temp to 250. It was only at this point that my probe on the fire side of the rack hit 225 or thereabouts and the one opposite pushed above 195. I probed the brisket when the flat hit 190 and then decided to wrap as it was nearly 12 and was hoping to pull at latest 2. Two hours later, I probed done at 209- a 20 hour smoke.

It was a great brisket. Very even cook- perhaps my best ever from that point of view. The flat was amazingly soft and juicy and the point was very well rendered and done perfectly. I was surprised that the bark was not as thick or hard as usual. I can only guess that perhaps that temp at rack level was lower than I thought and it was a very low and slow cook.

Funny thing- my last brisket before this one I cooked in the same position, but smaller animal. Was not a wagyu and I wrapped too late and has a somewhat dry flat. That cook, the temps were pretty even throughout the cook on all sides.

One note, I have been playing with salt and I now salt at least one day in advance, leave the brisket uncovered in the fridge and add pepper after a slather before cooking (I do not salt a second time). You don’t get the salty bark (which I like), but you do get a far more seasoned brisket for someone who does not inject.

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