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thirdeye 07-06-2006 10:12 AM

Burnt Ends - Food P@rn
I'm helping a couple of guys out with a barbecue (case-o-butts, lamb hind quarters & brisket) Tuesday. I'm cooking 3 or 4 briskets on my BDS, then during the rest I'll toss on some fatties, then help out on the cutting table. I'm going to surprise them, and the guests, with some burnt ends. One of my favorites.

Here are some before and after pictures from a test cook last weekend.

Bigdog 07-06-2006 10:18 AM

One of my favs too. Those look awesome.

kcquer 07-06-2006 10:22 AM

Burnt Ends are BBQ in my book!! Good looking stuff 3rdI!!

Yakfishingfool 07-06-2006 10:33 AM

can someone define a burnt end for me? What is the cut of meat? When is it prepared? What stage of the cook? Scott

Sawdustguy 07-06-2006 10:33 AM

Great Job 3rd Eye. They look absolutely delicious.

tommykendall 07-06-2006 10:56 AM

I think I need a large Kaiser bun and a beer.

Kirk 07-06-2006 10:57 AM


Originally Posted by Yakfishingfool
can someone define a burnt end for me?

They're just that, burnt (dry) ends of a smoked brisket. You cube 'em up, mix with sauce and then back into the smoker for awhile. They make excellent sammies. Some people do briskets for the sole purpose of cutting them up int "burnt ends."

kcquer 07-06-2006 11:01 AM


They're just that, burnt (dry) ends of a smoked brisket.
Actually burnt ends are neither burned nor ends. They are the point of the brisket, served cubed.

thirdeye 07-06-2006 11:06 AM


Originally Posted by Yakfishingfool
can someone define a burnt end for me? What is the cut of meat? When is it prepared? What stage of the cook? Scott

Burnt ends are brisket scraps, like the thin end of the flat
and any crumbles that fall off when slicing. They are so
popular that many use a lot of the nose for them too, just
toss it back on the cooker after separating and let it go
for a couple of hours. Meanwhile save any scraps while
you are slicing the flats and refrigerate them. When you
remove the point, cube it, removing some of the big fat
areas, mix in the flat scraps, cover with sauce, and
return to the cooker in a pan until the sauce reduces.
They are smokey, saucy and ultra tender.

jt 07-06-2006 11:10 AM


Originally Posted by thirdeye
They are smokey, saucy and ultra tender.

and absolutely delicious

kcquer 07-06-2006 11:23 AM

We're obviously running into some regional differences in what defines a burnt end. I've been eating burnt ends, beef tips or brownies for 35 years here in the KC area and here's what I know from around here.

If a Q joint served me flat as burnt ends I would walk out without paying. Burnt ends are brisket point and sauce should be no where near a burnt end until its on some ones plate. Some places do serve them sauced, but those places also thow in cutting board scraps and chuck roast and a lot of other crap that isn't a burnt end, I don't go to those places (AB's).

A burnt end is a brisket point that has been removed from a packer when the flat is ready for slicing. The point is then trimmed, reseasoned and returned to the cooker until the collagen in the point makes the meat soft, tender and quite moist without sauce.

Ron_L 07-06-2006 12:15 PM

I'm with KC. That's the definition I've always heard as well. When I cook a packer I generally save the point and freeze it. When I have two or three points i will thaw them and re-cook them.

Good looking burnt ends, Thirdeye!

thirdeye 07-06-2006 12:17 PM


Originally Posted by kcquer
We're obviously running into some regional differences in what defines a burnt end...

I think regional is the key work here. The story I've heard in Texas was that they were a way to sell the scraps from the slicing table, and later on the points were used too because of demand. I'm like you and prefer them with a lot of meat from the point, but the scraps go in mine too. I also reduce them in sauce, and that is not always the case in Texas, where they may be served with sauce on the side.

For other points of view, here are a few words from Bill Wight's FAQ:
Jeff is from New England, and Danny is from the Southwest. I am not familiar with Jim McGrath.

Jim McGrath and Danny Gaulden--

The burnt ends of a brisket come about two ways. As stated above:

"...You can now trim the fat off the point and chop up the point meat, or you can return the point to your smoker and continue smoking it for 4 to 6 more hours to render the fat". This will produce the very intensely smoke-flavored "burnt ends". (EDIT - the sentence above was from earlier in the article, they are not implying 2 cooks) They can be made on purpose by returning the point to the smoker for another 4-6 hours and they can result from the thinner parts of the brisket's flat getting overcooked during the smoking process. The burnt ends are usually rather dry and very smoky tasting. These can be served thinly sliced with lots of BBQ sauce or chopped up and used in dishes like chili, stews and soups.

Jeff Lipsitt--

I asked Jake, at Jake's Boss BBQ, certainly one of the best establishment Q'ers in New England, what was his definition of burnt ends. Here's what he said: "Traditionally, in Texas, the first cut on the flat and the point were not considered good sandwich or serving pieces. Those pieces were put away until quite a few briskets had produced enough 'first cuts' to chop and mix with BBQ sauce. One day a week, the menu would then feature 'burnt ends'. . . and the price was right!" Then he went on to say: "Nowadays, because of the popularity of burnt ends, the whole brisket is used. Both the flat and point are roughly chopped and sizzled in a large pan over very high heat for a few
minutes before adding BBQ sauce."

RichardF 07-06-2006 12:45 PM

Burnt-ends are the closet thing there is to BBQ candy. Thirdeye, yours look great.

Yakfishingfool 07-06-2006 12:52 PM

OK, A bit slow on working with briskets...the brisket has a flat, the thin center section and comes to a point, "the point"? so it looks loke the whole thing can be twice smoked or slightly over smoked, cubed and doused in sauces. Kind of like making steak hash the day after steak and taters?? Scott

Sorry for the rudimentary questioning. It sounds so good that if I actually saw some I'd want to give it a try. Scott

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