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High Heat Brisket

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High Heat Brisket 10

The Grillin Fools are big fans of the high heat method of smoking pork butts/shoulder, brisket, and ribs.  It’s a bit of a misnomer in that instead of doing it low and slow at say, 200-225 for many hours, we kick up the heat to between 300-350 and cook these things in much less time with great results.  It’s more like medium heat method, but that doesn’t sound as good as high heat.  Let me hand it off to Arthur Aguirre as he took a combination of a couple of brisket recipes on our site and made this at my suggestion for a party he was having where he didn’t want to get up at 4:00 am to have a brisket ready by 3:00 pm.

***Editor’s Note ~ Arthur has started his own blog and I’m more than happy to promote his on mine.  His new site is called MajorLeagueGrilling.com***

On a warm mid-October weekend, I was chillin over at Scott’s house for some grillin and college football thrillin. He smoked some awesome chipotle pork tenderloin and a meatloaf. The Original GrillinFool was even kind enough to let me take some leftovers home to make some tenderloin sammie’s. He wasn’t at all like the pompous imbecile his buddies painted him to be (they don’t read this right?). Anyway, I told him about a brisket I’d be doing for the first time on my son’s birthday and I needed a good recipe. He recommended the combination of two recipes from this site. A couple days later, he sent me this modified recipe. I was psyched to try it and knowing it comes from the OGF himself, these recipes are tried and trusted methods.

Grillin Fool’s Brisket:

Ingredients:

5lb trimmed brisket (flat)

Trimmed side:

High Heat Brisket 1

Fat Cap side:

High Heat Brisket 2

Marinade:

Mustard – Dijon and sweet & hot stone ground:

High Heat Brisket 3

Rub:

Plowboy bovine bold and Montreal seasoning (But you can use your favorite rub or rubs):

High Heat Brisket 4

Mop:

1 cup white vinegar
1 cup beer
1 tbsp garlic salt
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp black pepper

High Heat Brisket 5

Instructions:

Marinade in mustard for 2 days:

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***Editor’s note ~ You can extend the marinade time to 4 or even 5 days.  The longer it marinates, the longer the vinegar in the mustard can work its magic***

Apply rub.

Set smoker for 300-350 and put in some apple wood.

Put the brisket in a disposable aluminum pan (fat cap down):

High Heat Brisket 7

***Editor’s note ~ There is a lot of debate on fat cap up or fat cap down.  I don’t think there is any difference unless using a mop sauce.  The mop sauce will not penetrate the fat cap.  It will only run over the short sides of the brisket and thus have very little impact if the cap is up.  Go fat cap down and let the flavored mop sauce baste the meat***

Smoke for an hour before mopping so the rub sets and sticks before mopping.  Brisket at the 1 hour mark:

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Be careful with the first mopping that you really only drizzle on the sauce as you will wipe the rub right off at this point if you really pour it on thick – if you do, reapply more rub. Mop every 30 minutes.

At the 2 hour mark:

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At the 3 hour mark:

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At about 4 hours, mop liberally and cover with foil to steam in the mop sauce and its own juices:

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After 5.5 hours of total cook time, it got to 200 degrees internal temp, I pulled it, wrapped it tightly in foil, then placed it in the oven to rest for at least an hour.  I waited an hour and a half before I started to slice it:

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I started slicing from the right side of the smoked beef. While slicing the brisket with my electric knife, the teeth marks of the blade were seen on the meat. Also, tiny fibers of meat were shredding off and not much liquid was oozing out of it, my first thought was the brisket was dry:

High Heat Brisket 13

One third of the brisket was this way, I ate a slice and my thoughts were confirmed. However, as I kept slicing I saw more liquid coming out of the meat. When I reached just short of halfway through the beef, it was all money from there. Juicy, tender slices of smoked brisket ecstasy was achieved:

High Heat Brisket 14

I used the reserved juice at the bottom of the foil pan to re-hydrate the tougher slices of meat. Nobody even knew the difference.

I don’t know what I could have done differently to prevent that small portion from drying out. The thing about BBQ is that it may never happen the same way twice. I could do the exact same recipe and get a different result. I’m not discouraged at all.  In hindsight, I could have pulled the meat off a little earlier or let it cook longer, but would the other side been just as tender and juicy? Maybe or maybe not…that’s BBQ.

***Editor’s note ~ Maybe rotate the pan ever hour to try to make sure it cooks evenly?  Maybe pull it a little sooner? Maybe that dry section of the brisket was much leaner than the other side?  Just a couple of thoughts.  Brisket is a fickle beast***

The brisket turned out fantastic. For as much food that was at the party, only a few slices of brisket were leftover to make a pot a chili. In addition, the whole process was an absolute time saver. I have to admit, I was skeptical of this hot and fast BBQ theory, but it works. There would have been no way to get all that work done for a party and tend the grills had I  done the low and slow method. With that said, I still want to try the low and slow method when I have a day to do nothing but BBQ, and do it with a bigger brisket.

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below or shoot me an email.

If you are interested in other brisket recipes, click here, or you can click here if you want other beef recipes.

Also, you can follow the Grillin Fools on their Facebook Page and post your own grilling pictures or join the general grilling conversation.  You can also follow them on Twitter @GrillinFool

High Heat Brisket
A brisket marinated in mustard for two days and cooked at high heat in record time
Author:
Cuisine: BBQ
Recipe type: Brisket
Serves: 8-12
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Ingredients
Brisket
  • 5 lb brisket
  • 4 oz mustard
  • 2 tbsp of your favorite rub
Mop Sauce
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 1 cup beer
  • 1 tbsp garlic salt
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp black pepper
Instructions
  1. Slather the brisket with the mustard on all sides and place in a resealable plastic bag
  2. Place brisket in the refrigerator for 2-4 days (that's right, days!)
  3. Remove from the plastic bag, place brisket fat cap down in a disposable aluminum pan and coat with the rub
  4. Set smoker for 300-350 and put in some apple wood
  5. Place the brisket on the smoker and prepare the mop sauce
  6. Combine all ingredients for the mop sauce and after an hour in the smoker, give the brisket a shower of the sauce, being careful not to wash any of the rub off
  7. Mop every 30 minutes until the brisket has been on for four hours
  8. Mop again rigorously and cover pan with aluminum foil
  9. Leave in the smoker until it reaches an internal temperature of 200 degrees
  10. Remove from the smoker, wrap tightly in foil and place in an off microwave or oven for an hour to rest
  11. Remove from the foil, slice across the grain and serve

 

  1. Fool's Pappy says:

    Great first-time effort Arthur! I’ve done a few more of these than Tom or Scott and I don’t think we’ve had a bad effort yet–just some that were better than others. The uneven thickness of the brisket may contribute to one end cooking unevenly compared to the rest of the beast. Scott is right on about rotating the pan–I don’t typically use the flank indirect method but place the coals on one side and the beef on the other thus making rotating the pan away from the hotter side a bit more effective. For that you’ll need a larger grill surface than what was used here–the CharBroil 940X has the sufficient surface area to accomplish this method although I’ve done it on a much smaller grill. While every brisket I’ve done I’ve been lucky to have good success the one that was the biggest hit used Spice Island’s Brazilian Beef Rub–just a great warm glow was added by that great rub. Given the proximity of the beef to the fire on your grill I might have pulled it an hour sooner and foiled it. To save some cash I usually buy a whole brisket and cut it in half–one half is much leaner but the other side is full of flavor too. You’ll lose a bit in the trimming but some stores sell this rascal at, or slightly above, wholesale cost. I’ve fired up 2 grills and done them both at the same time with pecan wood smoke–you may find the fattier half to be even juicer. Keep experimenting–your dinner guest will enjoy it!

  2. I am cooking for Super Bowl. I will be using a gas grill. I am a little nervous about doing a brisket. Any tips would be appreciated.

    • Bill,

      Take the grill grates off one side of the grill and turn the burners on that side on until you get the grill at 300 degrees internally. Then put the brisket in a foil pan and put that on the side of the grill with the grill grates and no heat. Then put unsoaked wood chips into tin foil balls (poke holes in the foil) onto the side with no grates and right onto the flames.

      Open the lid only to add more smoke wood when it stops smoking and to mop the brisket with a mop sauce. Take it up to 195-200 and pull it and set it aside to rest for about an hour to rest and then slice…

      …….Scott

      • To get 300 degrees i have to have my one burner on high. Won’t this cause my chunks of hickory/apple to just catch fire rather than smoke? I switched over to the chunks of wood because the chips always caught on fire and didn’t last as long. I am wwondering if running the wood chunks on the left and right burners at a low temp would be a good idea and have the brisket cooking indirect in the middle is a better or worse option?

        • With the lid closed, the wood should only smolder and smoke. If you go low on either side you’ll not get hot enough to get the wood to smoke. You could always try it, but I’m guessing you won’t get it hot enough for the wood to smoke, but let me know if you do…

          …….Scott

  3. How much mop sauce do you use at each basting?

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