Old School Butcher Style Smoked Brisket

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Jan 13, 2017
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Carthage, Illinois
Please suffer through the introduction of the story and recipe....

As a cow/calf producer, preconditioner/backgrounder, fat cattle feeder, local locker butcher, and cook occasionally on the side at the local steakhouse I cut the steaks for....there are experiments that are worth a try.

I purchased a brisket from a local beef we processed that was about 9 1/2lbs. I aged it for a few weeks in my office refrigerator after vacuum sealing it and flipping it over every few days. I then froze it and planned it for a family dinner. Well, weather this New Years Day wasn't safe for the family to get together here in Central Western Illinois. So, the thawed out brisket was back in the office fridge again.

Dealing with weather, feeding cattle in the feedyard while keeping up with the meat locker, I pushed it back till last Sunday (Yesterday at the time I write this). Saturday, I went out into the still afternoon after feeding with my brother and we went to a shag bark hickory that the top was ripped out two springs ago. We cut some of the top, went back to the ranch headquarters to the machine shed where the 25-ton wood splitter was and made small hickory blocks. Some were put in a used protein tub, some stacked by the smoker, and some put in a 5-gallon bucket with water to soak. So, I kicked off the smoker without charcoal and only hickory, newspaper, and a couple matches. Got it going.

Sunday morning at 6:00 AM, went out and stoked the fire with more wood in the smoker. Meanwhile, as I stood in a sweatshirt, soccer shorts, Under Armor ankle socks in Twisted X leather loafers, my Australian Blue Heeler (My little girl Zeva) went out to my mother's portion of the yard and did the deed in a part of the yard that so irritates my mother, especially since everything is covered in snow. Still dark, the fire kicked back off and we went back inside.


Moving forward, I took the peritoneal sack I took from a steer we got at the locker earlier in the week. The peritoneal sack is what surrounds the organs in the abdominal cavity. It is very fatty and excellent for cover to keep in moisture for what you are smoking.

The brisket was from a local beef that I cut, trimmed and aged. Taking the sack out of the plastic bag I had it in the refrigerator, placed it on a baking pan in the oven for 20 minutes to loosen it up, then washed it in hot water in the sink until it was very pliable.

The smoker was going full tilt with coals from the hickory I cut the day before. I put a seasoning rub on both sides of the brisket (PM me if you want to know the seasonings), then seared both sides of the brisket over the fire in the smoker.

Taking it out and then adding more seasoning to both sides, the brisket was wrapped in the peritoneal sack, secured by about six toothpicks.

Placed on the smoker and then cooked/smoked for 7-hours with blocks of just cut cured blocks of hickory between 225-275 degrees, however, the weather allowed for consistency.

Pulled out, the added skin was caramelized. Very delicate though, and easy to cut. The brisket inside was moist. I proceeded to cut the brisket into 1/2" slices for the family supper.

It was an amazing dinner!


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