Questions from a Newbie

SteveSpy

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Hello fellow smokers, my name is Steve and I live in Austin Texas. I made a wise decision to purchase a Weber SmokeFire EX4 and I just seasoned it yesterday. I'm super excited to start smoking some meat for the first time in my life. I have lots of questions for y'all.

My plan is to buy a trimmed brisket (or trim it myself). My issue is the schedule, and the amount of time it takes to cook the brisket in order for it to be ready around 4pm. With everything I have studied and learned, here is what I know so far: the brisket needs to sit in the fridge, with a dry rub and very tight seal for 12 to 24 hours. Next, it needs to be taken out, and unwrapped and to sit on the counter for about 3 hours so it can get to room temperature. Next, it needs to smoke for 7 to 8 hours until it hits the stall, and then be wrapped in butcher paper and cooked for an additional 7 to 8 hours. Then it needs to sit in a cooler for 3 hours. I know that the time estimates are never exact, because it all depends on the meat quality and weight but assuming a small margin of error, the schedule looks like this if I want to carve the brisket for my guests on a Saturday at 4pm:

Friday
8am add salt rub, wrap tight in cellophane, put in fridge
8pm unwrap, leave on counter, add pepper
11pm start smoker, set at 225
1115pm place brisket in smoker

Saturday
6am (check temp for stall at 160 degrees) take off smoker, wrap in butcher paper, put it back in
1pm remove from smoker, place in cooler
4pm carve and serve
 

Mr. X

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I would personally start sooner to get the error factor out of the way. worst case you could put in a warmer if it's early, but my wife asking" what time will the food be ready" gets old.
 
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SteveSpy

SteveSpy

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I would personally start sooner to get the error factor out of the way. worst case you could put in a warmer if it's early, but my wife asking" what time will the food be ready" gets old.
If I start earlier then that means I have to wake up at 5am? No thanks!
The wife's gonna bitch regardless :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:
 

JpsBBQ

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If I start earlier then that means I have to wake up at 5am? No thanks!
The wife's gonna bitch regardless :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:
Not true. Who cares if it stalls for an hour or two? Lots of Pro’s don’t wrap til 175-180 to get a thicker bark. I would definitely plan on a buffer. The product really improves with an extended rest too.

Secondly, your cow will drive the cook. It’s not math, it’s BBQ. Depending on the grade of brisket and many other factors the thing could vary by hours. I have no issue raising and or lowering the pit temp to help with my timing. Some people get really consumed by a specific pit temp. Hell, if it’s wrapped you can go up to 300 without issue. That really speeds things up. I usually bump to 275 if I’m hurting on the timing.

Enjoy!
 
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SteveSpy

SteveSpy

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Not true. Who cares if it stalls for an hour or two? Lots of Pro’s don’t wrap til 175-180 to get a thicker bark. I would definitely plan on a buffer. The product really improves with an extended rest too.

Secondly, your cow will drive the cook. It’s not math, it’s BBQ. Depending on the grade of brisket and many other factors the thing could vary by hours. I have no issue raising and or lowering the pit temp to help with my timing. Some people get really consumed by a specific pit temp. Hell, if it’s wrapped you can go up to 300 without issue. That really speeds things up. I usually bump to 275 if I’m hurting on the timing.

Enjoy!
Oh wow! I love it! More useful information! I never knew you could up the temp, nor did I know that the stall can last for hours! This is exactly what I needed to know, SUPER glad I joined this forum.

Now, when you say the product improves on an extended rest, you mean more than 3 hours in a cooler?

I don't want thicker bark, I want to wrap it as soon as the stall starts (I wonder if there is a way for the app to alert me when it hits 160? Gotta look into that). I think I'm going to stick to my original plan, I am buying the brisket today from a local butcher because I want to support local business and not a big box store. I'm planning on buying Prime if he has it, and asking him to trim it for me.
 
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SteveSpy

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Here she is, gents!! In all her glory!! Let the games begin!
 

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Brad S

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Sounds like a good plan. I just give mine a basic trim, slap on some seasoning and put er on, but I need to up my game. One thing I've learned though, for me it works best to start it in the evening, then I wrap it in butcher paper just before going to bed, top off the hopper, and let it do it's thing overnight. Brisket takes a long time so let the grill do the work while you sleep. Like others said, start earlier rather than later. An extra hour or 2 in the cooler resting won't harm anything. And if you screw it up, chop the pieces up and make chili with it :)
 
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SteveSpy

SteveSpy

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Here we go!! Seeing as I’m from Montreal, I went with a dry rub Montreal steak spice!! 24 hours and I’ll put that sucker on the grill for an overnight slow cook!!
 

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AHoneyman

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You can always cheat like I have been doing. Start and get to 150-170 in the evening. Wrap and put in the oven over night at around 200-220. At that point, smoke is not effecting anything. You can sleep all night or check the temp without going outside. In the morning, you can check and see where the internal temp is so you can adjust the oven temp to the predicted touchdown. Saves on pellets, etc.
 
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SteveSpy

SteveSpy

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You can always cheat like I have been doing. Start and get to 150-170 in the evening. Wrap and put in the oven over night at around 200-220. At that point, smoke is not effecting anything. You can sleep all night or check the temp without going outside. In the morning, you can check and see where the internal temp is so you can adjust the oven temp to the predicted touchdown. Saves on pellets, etc.
Nah, I’m going to stick to my plan but I’m going to let it rest for only an hour before putting it on, from 9pm to 10pm and I’ll put it on at 10.
 
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SteveSpy

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You can always cheat like I have been doing. Start and get to 150-170 in the evening. Wrap and put in the oven over night at around 200-220. At that point, smoke is not effecting anything. You can sleep all night or check the temp without going outside. In the morning, you can check and see where the internal temp is so you can adjust the oven temp to the predicted touchdown. Saves on pellets, etc.
Man, I can't stop thinking about this oven cheat! It makes perfect sense! Why waste pellets when the smoking process is complete?? All you're doing at that point is cooking it at 225 anyway, might as well just use a regular oven, right? So where do you put it, when you transfer it into the oven? I have a grilling pan for turkeys and it has a grill insert, I'm assuming you use something like that, right?
 

AHoneyman

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I use a cheap disposo pan (I use multiple times) that moves from the grill to the oven. I try to keep separate pans so I do not get the oven filled with grill residue. That also keeps me from washing good pans from the grill. Also, if you are doing a butt, you catch all of that juice that you can add back.
 
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SteveSpy

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Here we go!!!! EEEEE!!!
 

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AHoneyman

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That looks good with the pan. I would remove the top grate just for easy of movement. But not now.
 
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