Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Brisket on the offset

This is the first post-restore smoke on the New Braunfels Black Diamond (NBBD.) I'm firing it up pretty much unmodified just to see how it works as designed. I found a large brisket  at Sam's - 14 lb - that might actually be a packer.

It is 52°F as I start the fire with a predicted high of 70 today. The sky is clear and the wind is very light at 0-5 mph.

I trimmed as much fat off the brisket as I could and rubbed liberally with salt and pepper. I'll smoke fat side down and put some of the trimmings on top to help keep the meat basted.

Fire was started with a mini-chimney of lump and then stoked mostly with oak splits with some apple and maple mixed in. The fire box got hot enough to ignite splits warming on the shelf!

timetemp comment
8:25°Got some hot coals on some wood in the fire box.
8:38443°/484°FProbably put too much wood in the fire box and temper is climbing right up! I'll let it burn down a bit before I put any meat in there. I'm using a mix of oak and maple to get things started. I'll probably add some apple as things go along.
8:45482°/HHHOverranged the probe closest to the fire so I closed the slide about half and removed the probe from the smoke chamber.
Meat on! Fat side down. Draped liberally with the trimmed fat.
9:15234°/45°Threw some more wood on.
9:37261°/59°Temperature had come up and was dropping so I threw in some more wood before going for a run.
10:24189/93fire down to coals - stoked with oak.
11:06194/120down to coals again, stoked the fire with more oak.
12:51304/172Temp dropping a bit and time to wrap in paper
2:32277/199Temp falling off, time to probe. Probing pretty tender but still some resistance under the point. Threw one more split in and will probably leave it at that.
3:00248/207Time to rest my meat.

It seems like the cooker in stock form likes to run about 320°F or so. For the last stick, I've cut the draft port to about half to see what that does. (Another NBBD owner told me it holds 225-250 at 1/4 slider opening.) Paper wrap seemed to work OK. It captured a lot of liquids by the end of the rest. Meat toward the thick end was terrific! The other end was pretty chewy. I think that the temperature distribution is pretty uneven. 

What to do differently next time...

  1. Install some kind of tuning plate for more even heat distribution.
  2. Run with the door slider at 1/2 or 1/4.
  3. Run less than 4 miles between tending the cooker.
  4. Crumple some foil to make a gasket for the stack. It looks pretty leaky at the base.

1 comment:

  1. I installed a high heat silicone gasket around the base of the stack and along the smoke chamber door. It definetly made a difference. A tuning plate will also help.