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Texas-Style Brisket

Zacharia, Joy E
Southern Living 09-01-2003

You'll get fabulous flavor with this slow-smoked cut of beef. Ask a Texan about barbecue, and it's beef brisket , not pork, that's on the tip of his or her tongue. If you're not from those parts, you're missing out on some good eating. All it takes is one bite of perfectly slow-cooked brisket , and you'll be hooked.

According to Jeff Shivers, native Texan and executive director of the International Bar-b-que Cookers Association, "Some folks in other parts of the country don't even know what brisket is. It's just now starting to become more popular in places other than Texas." Briskets sold in that state are larger than those sold elsewhere, mainly because there's a greater demand for the cut. Texans have no problem finding a 10-pounder. The rest of us find cuts ranging from 4 to 6 pounds.

Our Assistant Garden Design Editor, Troy Black, isn't from Texas, but you wouldn't know it by his brisket . Troy's Traditional Brisket recipe contains all the prerequisites of a true Texas brisket -a great rub, a juicy mop, and a long, slow smoking time. He's got the technique down to a science too. Try his delectable recipe, and visit southernliving.com for more tips on making the best brisket .


Traditional Brisket

MAKES 8 SERVINGS

PREP: 40 MIN., CHILL: 8 HRS., SOAK: 8 HRS.,

SMOKE: 6 1/2 HRS., STAND: 1 1/2 HRS.

A good rule of thumb is to smoke brisket 1 hour and 15 minutes per pound at 225[degrees] to 250[degrees] until the internal temperature reaches 190[degrees].

Ingredients
  • (5 3/4-pound) trimmed beef brisket flat
  • Brisket Rub (recipe below)
  • Hickory smoking chips
  • Brisket Mopping Sauce
  • Mop
  • Brisket Red Sauce (optional)
Directions
  1. SPRINKLE each side of beef with 1/4 cup Brisket Rub; rub thoroughly into meat. Wrap brisket in plastic wrap, and chill 8 hours.
  2. SOAK hickory chips in water for 8 hours. Drain.
  3. PREPARE smoker according to manufacturer's directions, regulating temperature with a thermometer to 225[degrees]; allow it to maintain that temperature for 1 hour before adding beef.
  4. REMOVE beef from refrigerator, and let stand 30 minutes.
  5. PLACE brisket on smoker rack, fat side up. Maintain smoker temperature between 225[degrees] and 250[degrees].
  6. ADD a handful (about 1/4 cup) of hickory chips about every hour.
  7. BRUSH beef liberally with Brisket Mopping Sauce when beef starts to look dry (internal temperature will be about 156[degrees]).
  8. Mop top of brisket every hour. When internal temperature reaches 170[degrees], place brisket on a sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil; mop liberally with Brisket Mopping Sauce. Wrap tightly, and return to smoker.
  9. REMOVE brisket from smoker when internal temperature reaches 190[degrees] with an instant-read thermometer.
  10. Let stand 1 hour.
  11. Cut into very thin ( 1/8- to 1/4-inch thick) slices across grain. Serve with Brisket Red Sauce, if desired.
Brisket Rub:

MAKES 2 CUPS

PREP: 5 MIN.

This makes enough for about three briskets .

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup black pepper
  • 3/4 cup paprika
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons garlic salt
  • 2 tablespoons onion powder
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground red pepper
Directions
COMBINE all ingredients. Store in an airtight container.

Brisket Mopping Sauce:

MAKES 4 CUPS

PREP: 10 MIN.

This is enough sauce for about two briskets , so make half the recipe if you're preparing just one.

Ingredients

  • 1 (12-ounce) bottle beer
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons Brisket Rub
Directions

STIR together all ingredients until blended. Store in a airtight container in a cool place.

Brisket Red Sauce:
MAKES 3 1/2 CUPS

PREP: 10 MIN.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
Directions
  1. STIR together all ingredients until blended. Serve sauce heated or at room temperature.

NOTE: Mops may be found in the grilling supply section of supermarkets, in restaurant-supply stores, and in the grilling accessory section of sporting goods stores. For testing purposes only, we used the Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker Smoker.
Copyright Southern Progress Corporation Sep 2003

 

 
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