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SVQ side by side with brisket and chicken

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  • Nuke em
    Club Member
    • Jun 2016
    • 746
    • Nj

    SVQ side by side with brisket and chicken

    Last Saturday I decided to start another sv project. I went out and bought a 13.84 lb brisket and 2 whole roasting chickens and did a side by side comparison or reg smoking process and a svq process. while I am no expert, this is how I did it and how I felt about the outcome of both products. I took the food to an old neighbors house and used 10 people to do a side by side comparison
    I took the brisket and tried to slice it length wise and to get as close to possible. the point ended up a little more on the other so I decided to svq that one. After trimming the weight went from 13.84 to 11.83 lbs. after cutting in half, the sv one was 5.68 lbs and the other reg was 5.95. (need to hone my slicing in half technique). both were dry brined in the fridge for 24 hours.

    sliced in half before dry brine
    we will talk about the fat cap later
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    after dry brining I took them and added a modified bbbr to both and took the sv for a swim
    when I vacuumed it, it shrunk it up a little bit.
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    as recommended, I set the temp to 155 for 24 hours. when finished I shocked it and brought the temp to safe level and in the fridge it went till i got off of work that friday night.
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    Now for the chicken, again, after a little research, i did my usual dry brine for 24 hours. i debated if i should spatchcock or just do halves. i decided to half em in the long run cause that is my usual way of cooking em. One of the chickens weighed 6.75, and the other was 7 lbs. they were seasoned with a nice rub that I make that the public likes really well, a sweet with a hit of heat in the back which pairs with well with one of my sauces that I make
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    now i didnt do to heavy on the rubs of both chicken and brisket cause i knew i was gonna give em a touch up after the sous vide

    the chicken i set the temp at 150 for 6 hours

    i removed a lot of the fat cap on the brisket thinking less fat on the brisket, then less purge in the bag. it was a on the fly decision. lesson learned.

    after the brisket finished taking a bath, I did a weigh in it went from 5.68 down to 4.23lbs but it swelled up. I prepared em side by and couldn't believe how much it reduced in size
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    fired up the wsm with both briquettes and lump with a bunch of hickory chunks and got it going. once it was ready I slapped em on and let em rip
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    the sv brisket only took an hour and half to get back up to temp of 154 at which time I pulled
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    where as the reg brisket took 6 hours and 45 mins to get to a prob temp of 195
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    my pit temp went from 268 to the 280 range.

    if ya notice, the reg on the left how much it started to shrink already compared to the other picture. this is when I pulled the sv then vacuumed and shocked it
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    after shocking and fridging the sv brisket and a cat nap, it was time for the chickens. I decided to go with one of my many gassers that I usually smoke my chickens on I take a tray put a grate on top of it then place the chickens on top of that to make it a indirect heat source. I also only turn the flame on from the far left and right sides so no heat is underneath. I also add hickory chunks on the side to get a good smoke going.
    well the sv chicken finished in six hours I pulled and also shocked it and fridged it. added the rub to the uncooked chicken and a touch up to the sv chicken then got em on the gasser. in this pic the sv chicken is on the right and you can see they plumped up nicely I had em turned to keep the breasts away from the heat source
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    what is strange about this is it took the same time for both to get to both the target temps. You would think the reg chicken would take longer but it didnt. i think it might of been a probe issue or placement of the probe. When i saw it, i grabbed my thermo pop and verified they were at the correct temps so i pulled em both and vacummed em and shocked both then fridgedf.

    Now that everything was cooked, shocked and fridged, I called my buddy neighbor up, told him I was getting ready to head to his house and get some work done (we planned on taking his trailer that was filled with bulk trash that needed to get dumped at the county dump site, along with my trailer that I loaded at my other old neighbors house with her bulk trash. 2 loads, two different old neighbors. they both only live 1 house apart) told him I needed to stop and get some gas then I would be over. (30 min drive)
    since I was getting some gas I figured I would get a couple propane tanks filled at the gas station (cheapest price that I have found in my area 11 dollars a tank).
    Now the gas attendant (they have to pump the gas for you in New jersey) is always there and has gotten to know me and the side business I do and knows when I come thru to look in the back of the truck if I don't have the food trailer and see if there is any coolers in there. well he lucked out on Saturday.
    a little small talk and he asked if I cooked today, why yes I replied, at which time he asked if I cooked any chicken (he cant eat beef or pork). yes was my reply. he asked what I charged for a sandwhich and I told him. in his broken English he told me he was really hungry and wanted a sandwhich and he would buy it from me. I thought he was joking, but then realized he wasn't.
    ahhh. what de hell why not.
    well, I had all my gear that I needed to serve to people (cutting boards, knives, gloves, etc, to serve safely) so I open the tail gate of my truck and got to work as my truck was being filled with gas. now the other attendant sees what im doing, so I ask if he wanted one also which he quickly replied yes. it wasn't a tailgate party, just a tailgate serving sessions. I pulled one bag of the reg chicken out of the ice and got to work carving and making a couple of sandwiches' for the starving guys (sill don't know why they were so hungry at 8am..Maybe did some fasting or something on Friday). also pulled out my 3 sauces and let them choose which one they wanted. I think it made there day. I did tell em it was cold chicken but the way they scarfed it down, I don't think they really minded. they tried to pay me but I didn't take any money. got all gassed and reloaded everything back up and off I went to finish what I started.
    Got to my ole neighbors and his trailer wasn't even tied down and his tail light on his trailer was fixed yet (the kid stepped on it and broke it) well, here I am to the rescue. the bulb was still good and he still had the housing to the fixture so after prying and rigging got it to work (nothing a lil duct tape cant fix). tied his load down and he decided to take his trailer with his mini van while I take mine with my truck. I go down to my trailer 2 houses down and the female neighbor decided to add more to what I already loaded. (chairs, tables, desk, tarps from her pool, outdoor furniture. she piled it on and left some next to the trailer. I loaded all of it on and straped it down.
    Since I took the sous vide with me I took all the food items into his pool room and set it up, filled a cooler with water and added the sous vide and plugged it in. when the time came all I had to do was start it up wherever I was which is a nice feature in itself. I figured when the time came I could turn it on and at least have the water up to temp when we got back and then pull out the food and set it in to reheat.
    Charlie and me got to the dump and unloaded both trailers and then he tells me that a relative has a riding mower that he can have but he has to pick it up and asked if it was okay if we go get it (again, not the sharpest tool in the shed, would pay someone to change a spark plug, then to do it himself....cause I really don't think he knows how to). that type of guy. But he is a great down to earth person which is why I like him as a buddy). he then proceeds to tell me that his fridge is going out in his garage and another relative has a fridge but he has to come and get it also. I say to hime two different locations, two trailers, why not I go get one and he goes and gets the other. it would same time. then we could get back and eat. its now around 11 am. he strikes down the idea cause he says one is a little weird and we should go back to his house drop off the mini van then go get the stuff. okay fine 30 min drive back to his house.
    we get to his house and his smarter half tells him she has to go out and to take the younger one with him and she will take the older kid. well baby seat is in the van so now I have to drive in a mini van with a trailer. oh well.
    we get to the one house after 40 min drive and pick up the riding mower, a nice one that was for free. the relative fired it up drive it on the trailer then took the battery cause it was a new one.. then Charlie asks me if I would think the fridge would fit on the trailer or should we go back to his house and drop off the mower or go and try and get the fridge. well its another 45 mins to the from where we were at to the house with the fridge is. its gonna be a long day. I just want some food. I told Charlie that it depends on how big the fridge is and maybe, it would be tight but maybe. so off we go to get the fridge.
    we get to that house and after a rear bag collector removal and a little shifting I got it to fit on the trailer. whew. now another 50 mins back to Charlie's house. I fire up the joule so it would be ready when we got there.
    we get back to his house and unload the stuff and he says lets go get a battery for it.. man, never ending, I wanna eat and drink a beer at this point. we head over to the Walmart and they don't have one. I made Charlie take a picture of the battery when the guy removed it so if need be, he could order one after telling him mower batteries come in all different shapes and sizes. well Walmart didn't have one but a local auto part (which is where the guy got it) was right next to a beer outlet only a couple of miles from where we were at. so I had him order it online and pickup up at the store(doing it that way saves 20 bucks than just going in and buying it....some online special...go figure).
    so we stop at the beer outlet and get some nice cold ones, go across the street and get the battery. back to his house we go.
    we get back to his house and the neighbor across from him is at Charlie's house waiting for us (he is the guy that pushed me into starting my side business). as Charlie is attempting to install the battery im sitting on my tailgate enjoying a cold one with dennis. didn't want to stop that but I had to drop the proteins in the water (sounds strange doesn't it). after showing dennis the ins and out of the sous vide, in went the proteins.

    I have to go do a few things so while ya'll laugh at my type of day that I regularly have, ill come back and give ya the rest of the typical day that I have when im not working and the finished product doing it sv with a few more pictures.

    Attached Files
  • HawkerXP
    Club Member
    • Jul 2016
    • 4695
    • Northern Virginia
    • 3 Weber kettles, and a PBC
      Dot w two probes
      Slo n Sear
      Cold beer

    Hey, my friend has a jet ski he'll give me can I borrow your trailer? LoL!

    What part of NJ? Got to be southern.


    • Nuke em
      Nuke em commented
      Editing a comment
      oh yeah southern jersey. I live about 20 mins from atlantic city and he is about 15 from philly
  • Nuke em
    Club Member
    • Jun 2016
    • 746
    • Nj

    okay im back. where was I? oh yeah, so some of the relatives of his decided to show up which made for a good pool of people to test on. wouldn't ya know it the couple which we drove all the way out to pick up the fridge showed up, in their pickup truck. they coulda just brought it with them but oh well.
    on problem that I had while reheating the food was that I didn't set the bag of chicken that I opened for the gas attendant in just right and later found out that the steam collected on the lid of the container and dripped into the bag and watered it down some by the time I discovered it. another mental note made.
    so when the proteins were back up to food safe level I started to slice and serve to everybody this was my findings with mix results again from the victims, er taste testers
    everybody thought that the chicken and the sv chicken were really close. it was a 50 50 mix. I would suspect it would of been better if the rub didn't rub off the regular chicken with the steam that collected in the bag. my opinion was I likec the sv chicken better it seemed to be juicer than the reg one. not rubbery at all. it had a nice texture feel in the mouth. I think this along with my sv pulled pork will be the new method.
    the brisket..... again after everybody was saying they were both really good, I believe they chose the regular cooked over the sv brisket. I noticed that the people that taste tested small pieces, when they made the sandwhich took the reg brisket more than the sv brisket.
    my take....I liked the reg brisket over the sv brisket. it seemed that the sv brisket didn't render the fat nearly as much and seemed to me dry. could this be because of taking off to much of the fat cap when I prepped? the sv did have a smoke ring so the other difference is the color of the bark. this picture does shows a slight smoke ring but doesn't look like a fully rendered hunk of brisket. while there is bark, it js just not as pronounced..also notice how it swealed almost rounded like a roast. looking at the top of the point, it just looks dry
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    this picture shows the reg brisket. it seemed a little dry from the looks of the strands of meat but the sliced pieces shows a defined rendered fat within the meat. on the cutting board is the juices that came out of it by slicing a few pieces. of course the bark is more defined and believe it tastes better
    seems to be about the same smoke ring. it was not dry but I believe it has a better melt in the mouth and texture feel. like a brisket should taste and look like.

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    after I cooked both of the briskets, I weighed them here are the results
    the sous vide started at 5.68 went to 4.23 lbs
    the reg briskets started at 5.95 and went to 3.54 lbs
    so a big question. the reg brisket retained its shape more but lost more weight in the long run, but tastes better
    the svq brisket swelled like a roast but less but came out dryer. I believe it was because it didn't render the fat as much

    I know there are different was of cooking a brisket that what I did. but being a first timer with svq brisket I need to figure out the right time and temps for the sv. maybe reduce cooking time in the sv but increasing the water temp. I wonder if I could get it to at least 175 to render the fat, then that way it would spend more time in the smoker which would make more bark and render the fat. or even keep at the same time, and increase the temp of it. more experimenting will need to be done.
    but for now with the big cook coming up ive decided to do the 200-250 lbs of pork with the sv along with the 150 lbs of chicken.
    for the brisket I will stick to the tried and true reg smoked brisket. that's gonna be around 200 lbs .
    as I am learning the sv system I do like it. I can start the sv before I get off work and cook a quick hamburger or steak in no time when I get home and other things with it. it seems to be a nice tool to use. but sometimes ya just cant cook with out a full fire the whole way thru.
    and since I will be using it to reheat for the big cook it will save a lot of time and I wont have to be tied for 3 days straight cooking. with the sv, my smoking time will be cut in half as I figure it which will leave me more time to prep and prepare for the other things that pop up. Like if my neighbor Charlie calls me to change a spark plug.
    I also purchased another joule to have to do double duty.
    next weekend I will be out selling for a crowd of 1000 so it will be a good test on the svq pulled pork and chicken. that will be the final decision and I will report back after that. thanks everybody for sticking thru this long post.


    • RonB
      Club Member
      • Apr 2016
      • 11851
      • Near Richmond VA
      • Weber Performer Deluxe
        Pizza insert
        Smokenator 1000
        Cookshack Smokette Elite
        2 Thermapens
        lots of probes.

      Sounds like an eventful day for sure...


      • Ahumadora
        Club Member
        • Oct 2015
        • 1878
        • Pilar Buenos Aires, Argentina

        Great write up and thanks for 1./ sharing yur findings with us and 2./ helping out old neighbors.


        • treesmacker
          Club Member
          • May 2018
          • 789
          • Grants Pass OR
            • Rec Tec Trailblazer RT-340
            • O-Grill 600 Portable Grill with O-Dock
            • Cuisinart 360 Griddle
            • Ooni Fyra (coming soon)

          Great write up and super experiment. I read the whole thing (whew), quite a day, and you are quite a guy for serving up those gas station attendants and helping out the neighbors and relatives.
          Just looking at the brisket pics, I would definitely go with the regular method over SV; it just looks right.
          For the chicken, I agree SV makes it so delicious - that's how I'm doing it now, especially when white meat is included.
          Pork, I'm kinda on the fence - I haven't tried it with SV yet, but I like the non-SV results so well that I may not bother - I like the bark and it has enough fat I think it comes out so juicy anyway - injecting also is an option. I can see, for you, cooking large amounts and needing to cut the time, it makes sense.
          Thanks again for sharing your excellent experiments!


          • klflowers
            Club Member
            • Sep 2015
            • 2779
            • Tennessee

            I got a freezer that went out that needs to be hauled away - if you are down around TN any time soon, can you stop through with some chicken? I'll supply the bread.

            Great story, interesting day. I like the relatives that showed up in the pick up after you went and got the fridge. Sounds like some of my peeps.

            I know you will sell out next week




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