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View Full Version : % of teams using brisket flats vs. whole brisket in Competition


MilitantSquatter
09-25-2005, 09:04 PM
I had always known that the standard is to cook a whole brisket, especially in competiton. But as I re-read Dr. BBQ's book, I noticed he had a recipe for Shortcut Brisket using only the flats. He mentioned that many of the top competition teams use the flats exclusively. I was surprised to know this....

Question to the guys here who have competed for a while and have seen what what others are doing.... What % of teams would you say you have seen/known who only cook the flats for brisket ? If so, have you known any/many of them been able to cook winning quality brisket like this ?

smokincracker
09-25-2005, 09:07 PM
Whole Brisket to get that nice chopped meat from the tip.

kcpellethead
09-25-2005, 09:14 PM
Many teams cook flats. Depending on which weekend and where you are, it's probably a 50/50 deal. There are some REALLY good teams that cook flats. The top KCBS brisket team of the year cooks flats, as do many of the top ten teams in that category. Personally, I cook whole briskets. I just have it in my head that I can't get a flat to cook up as good in competition. Honestly, it's because I don't try.

BrooklynQ
09-25-2005, 09:24 PM
Whole Brisket to get that nice chopped meat from the tip.

In the KCBS judging class in Long Island, the Mullanes told the judges that chopped brisket was a sign that the meat was overcooked. That's something I'd watch out for.

wsm
09-25-2005, 09:38 PM
In the KCBS judging class in Long Island, the Mullanes told the judges that chopped brisket was a sign that the meat was overcooked. That's something I'd watch out for.

Chopped Brisket MAY mean that the team couldn't get good slices, but some teams slice their properly cooked flat and chop their point - and also make burnt ends out of the point.

KCBS rules do NOT require that the cook turn in sliced brisket - but the mouth feel tells if the brisket is overcooked (mushy) or undercooked (tough)

parrothead
09-25-2005, 10:44 PM
I wouldn't say thsat flats are quicker. We cooked 2 8 pound flats this weekend and it took them 15 hours to reach 178. They were just right at that temp, tendernesswise, but a little dry.

We had them in the upper (hotter) part of the cooker.

River City Smokehouse
09-26-2005, 06:29 AM
I use primarily flats for competition. I can get a more consistant product with them. I prefer the flat myself.

chad
09-26-2005, 06:33 AM
We've used both - currently we're in whole packer mode. :razz: Our usual plan is to take the slices from the middle part of the flat, just under the point, and use the point for chopped and burnt ends. The chopped goes underneath the slices and help keep the box warm.

Solidkick
09-26-2005, 06:50 AM
Whole Brisket to get that nice chopped meat from the tip.

I'm gonna hijack........

Hey Cracker!! Good to see you back..........:-D


Myself, I prefer to cook flats, but have done both........

Jeff_in_KC
09-26-2005, 08:27 AM
I think for first time out this weekend, we're gonna do both. We have the space with the Good One for I'm thinking two whole packers and one flat to see what happens. Then maybe try to make a call either way for DeSoto in two weeks.

Chick'n Pig BBQ
09-26-2005, 11:29 AM
I cook both at competition. My last cook I used the flat, but I still believe its all in the cut of meat. Some briskets are just better then others.

MilitantSquatter
09-26-2005, 07:45 PM
Thanks. I'm fairly surprised to lean the %'s can approach 50% even though some might be much lower or higher. Even more surprised to hear the frequency the flats are used exclusively by some of highest ranking teams .

I agree, it all depends on the quality of the cut and what you do with it.

chad
09-26-2005, 08:26 PM
You'll do best with what's in your "comfort zone". I've done flats and felt good about them and I've done packers. When I cater I tend towards flats because I can better control the "shrinkage" or loss due to waste.

Right now I'm leaning towards 12-14# packers.

smokincracker
09-26-2005, 09:08 PM
I'm gonna hijack........

Hey Cracker!! Good to see you back..........:-D


Myself, I prefer to cook flats, but have done both........
Bro you guys still gonna come to FL in Jan for Sebring FBA contest
PM me. I will set you up with one of my Spice boxes etc.

BBQchef33
09-26-2005, 09:52 PM
I wouldn't say thsat flats are quicker. We cooked 2 8 pound flats this weekend and it took them 15 hours to reach 178. They were just right at that temp, tendernesswise, but a little dry.

We had them in the upper (hotter) part of the cooker.


We also let that pit drop in temps below 150 several times. I jumped in and pitbitched several times when it was down near 120.


damn tasty briskets though. Sepcially at midnight with a few racks of ribs. :mrgreen:

parrothead
09-27-2005, 06:11 AM
We also let that pit drop in temps below 150 several times. I jumped in and pitbitched several times when it was down near 120.


damn tasty briskets though. Sepcially at midnight with a few racks of ribs. :mrgreen:
Yep. TK didn't show up to be designated pitbitch. I was gonne do it.......later.

jminion
09-27-2005, 06:17 AM
In the KCBS judging class in Long Island, the Mullanes told the judges that chopped brisket was a sign that the meat was overcooked. That's something I'd watch out for.

I'm sorry to hear that because the truth is there are teams that turn in chopped because that's the way they want to present it. If I'm going to turn-in point it isn't going to be sliced so you can chop, it would have nothing to do with it was over done.

spicewine
09-27-2005, 08:05 AM
We have been useing Flats the last few contests. 2nd place in the last 2 KCBS contests

Jeff_in_KC
09-27-2005, 08:17 AM
We have been useing Flats the last few contests. 2nd place in the last 2 KCBS contests

What have they been running in poundage, Jay? I wouldn't think you'd want to go much less that 8 pounds or so.

MilitantSquatter
09-28-2005, 08:37 PM
Just a follow up on BrooklynQ's takeaway from the class and Jim's point...

I attended the class as well, and the Mullane's did say that. However, the way the statement was said I don't think that it necessarily means you should pre-judge chopped brisket presentation as being overcooked. I took it as some people may have an overcooked brisket and then instead of having over cooked, bad looking slices they may chop it. I did not get the feeling that they wanted a judge to have a pre-conceived notion that a chopped only presentation must be overcooked.

Still, I'd want to do whatever I could to get in slices. I think they do brisket the most justice.