Brisket is one of the best slow-cooking meat barbecues.

 

When cooked properly, it has an unbeatable combination of tenderness and flavour. 

It is one of the nine Primal Cuts of beef that is derived from a steer/cow: Chuck, Rib, Short Loin, Sirloin, Round, Flank, Plate, Shank, and Brisket. 

This cut can be intimidating to most people interested in cooking it at home. After all, it is large , with a whole Brisket weighing up to 12-18 lbs.  

But Chefs, skilled cooks and beef enthusiasts who understand this cut can play up to its characteristics to achieve the desired flavour and tenderness. 

 

PRIMAL CUT #3: BRISKET

 

Historically, the term “Brisket” means “breast meat” or “breast.” 

The Brisket is a large, tough cut of meat from the chest or the breast of the steer, which is the most used set of muscles. This is another reason why the Brisket cut is low in fat content. 

But Beef Brisket is flavorful, and it is a favourite among barbecue lovers. 

 

SUBPRIMAL CUTS:

 

A whole Brisket is commonly called a “packer’s Brisket” or a “full packer.” and is made up of two muscles: the pectoralis profundi (also called the flat) and the pectoralis superficialis (also called the point). There is a large seam of fat separating these muscles. 

 

Brisket Point 

 

The Brisket Point is a thicker cut with dense meat, large chunks of fat and no bones. It is taken from the forward portion of a Whole Brisket and cut so that it tapers to a point.

Because of its thickness, it is best to cook it low and slow. It doesn’t do well when pressured cooked but turns out great when grilled, roasted, braised, smoked or sous-vide. 

 

Brisket Flat 

 

The Brisket Flat refers to the pectoralis profundi, or the deep pectoral of the Brisket primal. It comes from the posterior part and is relatively thin, hence the name flat half. You may also hear people call it the “first cut.” 

It can be considered a flat rectangular piece of meat and has less fat than Brisket Point. It is mostly meat and connective tissue. 

 

General Cooking Recommendations: 

 

Slow cooking is an intelligent method of cooking Brisket, so it is with plenty of smoke for this delicious cut of beef to make it tender as it cooks. 

Briskets have what is called a fat cap which is actually a layer of fat over a portion of the meat. The fat is usually trimmed before cooking, as too much fat can hinder the cooking process. However, a thin layer, about 1/4 inch, should be left to prevent the meat from drying as it cooks. Ultimately, it depends on the chef or cooks with their preference. 

Because heat should be low when cooking it, it will take longer to cook properly. 

An indirect heat smoker is the best option for smoking Brisket. 

Flavouring Briskets is easy. Most chefs prefer a simple combo of salt and pepper to let the meat’s natural flavour come out and for the wood smoke to do its job to enhance the meat flavour. 

But beef Brisket rubs can work wonders with the meat too. The beef rub should be applied at least 12 hours ahead for the flavours to be set. 

 

Here are some tips when smoking a Brisket:

 

  • Consistent temperature is the key to smoking. The ideal temperature range for most smoking is 107°C – 120°C ( 225°F to 250°).. And smoke the meat with the fat side up.
  • Suggested cooking times:

6-9 hours (10-pound Brisket)

10-12 hours (15-pound Brisket)

12-16 hours (20-pound Brisket)

  • Use a meat thermometer. This is a thick cut, and you need to ensure doneness. Meat thermometers can also help monitor the consistency of grill temperature.
  • Resist the temptation to lift the lid to peek to avoid temperature fluctuation.
  • Aim for an internal temperature of 90 °C -93°C (195°F-200°F)

 

Here are some tips when cooking a Brisket in the oven:

 

  • Wrap the Brisket in foil or butcher paper to create a surface barrier to prevent the meat from cooling. Cooling of the meat’s surface is called The Stall, which happens when the meat’s natural moisture evaporates up to the surface, resulting in the meat cools down. Wrapping a Brisket is not a requirement, but it helps for a fabulous cooked result. Wrap the Brisket when the oven’s internal temperature dips to  73°C – 76°C (165°F- 170°F).

 

In Summary:

 

Brisket is one of the best meat for a barbecue. It is a flavorful cut packed with fat and connective tissue and is perfect for low, consistent smoke. It is an intimidating cut of meat to cook for most people, as it takes patience and confidence to handle it. Hopefully, the tips above will help you. 

And if you are looking for skilled chefs and kitchen staff based in Perth and Western Australia for your staffing needs, give us a call at Anytime Staff.

We have a roster of professional chefs and kitchen staff that are available as short-term hires for :

  • peak periods
  • events/private parties and celebrations/pizza chefs
  • fill in for an emergency or annual leaves
  • start-up team for opening venues  

As part of our team, we have polite, professional Kitchen Stewards to assist you in cleaning and organising your kitchens. 

Anytime Staff can also assist you in looking for permanent hires by facilitating your recruitment process.

We also offer a Consulting Service to assist you in opening or running the cafe or restaurant of your dreams. 

 

That’s it for this week.


As always, professional chefs are on call at Anytime Staff!

Ciao for now,
Thomas

 


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