Getting started with brisket

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by dallasblues, Aug 12, 2014.

  1. Hey y'all.

    I just got a new Masterbuilt Pro dual fuel smoker for my 40th birthday and am anxious to get started. I'm preseasoning the smoker this week in hopes of having it ready for Sunday. I'm new to smoking and this will be my first attempt. I'm thinking about doing a brisket or chicken. I'd like to keep things simple for my first run. I think I have a pretty good grasp on how to prepare the meat the night before smoking. However, I'd like to hear some tips as to what to do during the process of smoking. Is it a "put it in, hold the temperature, and wait" kind of thing. Or is this gonna be more involved?

  2. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Dallasblues , hello and welcome to Our World.

    First , if this your intro into Smoking , I would suggest going with a nice Chicken and let the Brisket wait until you know your smoker better.  Practice with simpler , more fool proof meats like Poultry and smaller meats 2-3lb.Porkbutt . Once you have some good practice under your belt , go for a more challenging menu.

    Be sure you have a reliable thermometer , or more , (I have 5 different types ) .

    :)Oh, and please add your location to your Profile , it helps a lot. Thanks .

    Stan , have fun and . . .
  3. Oldschool has it right.  Chicken first.  Smokes easy and cheap if you have an issue.   As for what to do?  I put stuff in my smoker and go about my day.  I have a good idea of times for different meats and use that as a guide so I don't have to sit and stare at the smoker (I have an electric). 

    When you do your first pics cause we love to see!!

  4. Welcome Dallas! I run the same smoker and love it. I started off using gas just to maintain a basic temp 200 temp or so, you will have to run both the valve on the smoker and tank at near closed. Then get yourself a cast iron skillet and set it on top of the coal pan and throw in some chunks to give you some smokey flavor. Then get a good hotmit so you can check the chunks and ditch the included water pan in favor of a foil pan on the bottom rack - run up to Dollar General and get them cheap, I keep a good supply on hand.

    Ribs and chicken is a good place to start as is a nice boneless turkey breast. I'll suggest trying both ribs and poultry - if one doesn't turn out you have a back up - or you have two yummy selections!

    Run your ribs on a 3-2-1 or 2-2-1 method based on what you buy, look up ribs on here and you wil find plenty of referenes.

    When your ready to run fire management, get some good lump charcoal for a coal base to start - then smoke away!

    Pretty sure these are somewhere around 11x9, they fit well - catch the drippins but still allow smoke to get around it

  5. Great info y'all! It sounds like chicken will be in order this weekend. I'll definitely look for a cast iron skillet to use for the chunk wood. I'll also get the foil pan to catch the drippings. When I assembled the smoker I kinda thought the pan it came with looked rather small. I envisioned a big mess on my hands if I used that one!

    Forgive my ignorance... But what does 3-2-1 and 2-2-1 mean?

  6. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Blues my Brother, patience. When you are ready for RIBS , we'll give you the low down. Right now is too soon , an input overload may occur.

    Don't Jade yourself. [​IMG]  Have fun and learn first , Bro.

  7. Ok, I'll go with OldSchool on the ribs, they can be tricky. I will admit I enjoy cooking/smoking and seem to have an extra sense about take that into consideration when I say this....ribs were among the first things I did and they came out great, but they do need some special attention.

    The 2-2-1 and other number methods are - cook for 2 hrs, wrap & cook for 2 hrs, then unwrap and cook for 1 hr. Your mileage may vary and depends on the type of ribs your cooking, my smoker tends to run on the warm side and I also have a preference for hardwoods as a base smoke with some fruit woods added in, so things are occasionally done sooner.

    No matter what, search the site, LOADS of good info on here and if your not sure, just ask! And never forget - stick with the  4/40/140 guidelines - you have 4 hrs to get your internal temps from 40 to 140 degrees - otherwise you might be driving the porcelain bus. 

  8. Chickin it is! I haven't decided whether to brine or not. But I'll certainly give it a good rub. Now I just need to figure out the proper temperature and cook time. I'll likely put in some thighs and breasts versus a whole bird. Any thoughts?
  9. Smoking is like having an aquarium - a thousand ways to keep one....

    I only brine chicken for a short time - sometimes 30 mins, maybe up to 2 hours. Earlier this summer I used a Summer Shandy in the mix - came out fantastic!

    If you do whole birds you can boil down dem bones for soup stock.....MMMMMM....chicken soup with light smokey flavor. Matter of fact just pulled the last of the stock from the freezer today and made soup for dinner - special request.
  10. Good thought! Maybe I'll stick a whole bird or two in there to start. I'm pretty dang excited! I'm hoping to get it started tomorrow. I've gotta read up on how long to cook the bird and at what temp. I'll take some pics of the process as best as I can. I've got a few supplies to pick up first too. I need a decent thermometer I think. I'm not sure I trust the one on the door of my smoker.
  11. Hello.  If you want to do the whole yard bird I would spatchcock the chicken and remove the backbone.  That way the chicken is pretty much the same thickness and will cook evenly. Good luck.  Keep Smokin!


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