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First Time Brisket

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    First Time Brisket

    I am ready to try my first brisket on a WSM 18. I have an 8lb flat that is roughly 1 3/4-2 inches thick (trimmed). It is pretty uniform in thickness. I plan to cook at 225 using water in the pan and hickory, pecan and apple for smoke. I plan to use the crutch and also keep it in a cooler for at least an hour after hitting 203-205.

    I have read were a 12lb packer will takes 10-12 hours with the crutch. How long do you think this 8lb flat will take? Just the time from when I put it on the heated smoker to roughly when it will hit 203-205.

    Last time I smoked brisket was about 40 years ago using a cheap horizontal drum that had been converted to a smoker. I think I bought it at a grocery store for about $25. I cooked using charcoal between two 8 inch pieces of mesquite. I started the cook at about 3 am and we ate about 1pm in the afternoon. Never hear of a crutch back then. That was for two 15lb pieces bought fresh from a meat market in San Antonio. Nothing was trimmed. Turned out pretty good from what I remember -- but then again we were already into a couple of kegs by 1pm.

    I did an 8 lb packer a couple of weeks ago on my kettle/smokenator with temps ranging between 225-250, but never hit the stall and never crutched it. For whatever reason it powered right through and was done in about 8 hours.


      I'm guessing 8-10 hrs, but there are lots of variables at play. Pecan and hickory are quite similar flavors with hickory being the stronger of the two, I think you'd be OK saving one and using apple with the other. I'm doing a 16lb packer this Sat, looking forward to it, when are you smoking yours?


        8 to 9 sounds right What grade is the brisket ?


          Huskee. It is in the freezer and I will probably not cook for a couple of weeks. Right now I have leftover ribs and turkey in the freezer we are working on. My wife likes a stronger smoke flavor so I will go hickory and apple per your recommendation. I will save the pecan for use with apple for chicken and turkey. I had a friend give me some cherry. Is that similar to apple? What meats would you recommend for the cherry?

          Thom. I looked but could not find a grade. I was looking for CAB or choice. The piece has some nice marbling so I am hoping it turns out good. It was $6.78 a pound. Bought it at HEB which is a large grocery chain in Texas. It was vacuum packed by HEB and all but about 1/8-1/4 of the fat trimmed off. So it looks like the flat was cut down from a larger piece by the meat department.

          Based on all the feedback, I will plan on putting it on the hot smoker at 6 am and have ready to eat (after having sat wrapped) at 6 pm.



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