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Competition BBQ *On Topic Only* Discussion regarding all aspects of Competition BBQ. Experiences competing or visiting, questions, getting started, Equipment, announcements of events, Results, Reviews, Planning, etc. Questions here will be responded to with competition BBQ in mind.


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Old 06-20-2011, 12:02 PM   #1
roksmith
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Default Brisket tenderness

I've been questioning my understanding of the proper cooking of brisket lately. Thought I'd put it out there and see what you folks consider to be the perfectly cooked brisket.
What sort of tests do you perform on your brisket before it hits the box?
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Old 06-20-2011, 12:19 PM   #2
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I take a cheap thermometer and probe the flat it should feel like te going in butter. Very very little resistance
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Old 06-20-2011, 12:20 PM   #3
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I do the probe test as well as a measure of when to pull it off...

One of the things they teach in KCBS judging class is the "pull test".

It basically says that, if you take a slice of brisket between the thumb and index finger in both hands and pull, it should come apart easily, but not fall apart. If it stretches, it isn't done enough. If it falls apart, it's overdone.

That said, that's only for competition. Some folks may like different textures
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Old 06-20-2011, 12:35 PM   #4
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For competitions is what I'm looking for..
When I first started, so long as I could pick up the slice without it falling apart and when I pulled, it came right apart, I was happy with it.
Lately I've been fine tuning. Always trying to improve.
What I've been shooting for lately is a slice that can be folded in half without breaking and just the slightest amount of elasticity as it breaks when using the pull test instead of it breaking in a clean straight line.
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Old 06-20-2011, 02:03 PM   #5
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that sounds like a good point of reference
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Old 06-20-2011, 02:22 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sitnfat View Post
I take a cheap thermometer and probe the flat it should feel like te going in butter. Very very little resistance
What he said!!! Just don't overthink it, and you'll be ok!!
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Old 06-20-2011, 02:47 PM   #7
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Ahh.. we probably just hit a bad table last time out.
Need to take my own advice and don't make changes based on one bad score.

Thanks all...
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Old 06-21-2011, 07:49 AM   #8
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Slice your brisket consistent with its general tenderness. If it is very, very tender a thicker slice will do better in the pull test. Reverse if it is a little tough. Generally, but not always, cuts from the middle of the flat seem to work out best for this. For appearance trim away any remaining fat and try to include six (or more) slices that all look alike. Good luck!
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Old 06-22-2011, 12:07 AM   #9
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Depending on your expected hold time you may want to pull it when the probe slides easily but with just a slight, slight, slight touch of resistance vs. butter or no resistance.
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Old 06-22-2011, 02:55 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roksmith View Post
. . . What I've been shooting for lately is a slice that can be folded in half without breaking and just the slightest amount of elasticity as it breaks when using the pull test instead of it breaking in a clean straight line.
That's what I look for when I'm judging and when I'm cooking too. And the slices should be cut to the thickness of a pencil.
Sounds like a good goal to me.
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Old 06-22-2011, 03:59 PM   #11
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]If it hangs over my finger and doesn't break it's to my doneness .if it lays on my finger like a boomerang , not done

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Old 06-22-2011, 04:23 PM   #12
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Great visual Sled. There is a pic of Andy somewhere around here doing that same thing at a bash. I try to achieve that every time.
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Old 06-22-2011, 06:01 PM   #13
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Quote:
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]If it hangs over my finger and doesn't break it's to my doneness .if it lays on my finger like a boomerang , not done


sure, but then it's too late!

i've been able to do that with my first 2 KCBS briskets and still got killed in tenderness. well, maybe not killed, but what i gave em sure wasn't what they were looking for!
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Old 06-22-2011, 06:38 PM   #14
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sure, but then it's too late!

i've been able to do that with my first 2 KCBS briskets and still got killed in tenderness. well, maybe not killed, but what i gave em sure wasn't what they were looking for!
Probably needed some A-1
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Old 06-22-2011, 07:56 PM   #15
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yeah, or something like that.

but while still being able to drape it over my finger, it clearly wasn't cooked to perfection.

i think there may be a pretty small window for that.

really nice pic BTW.
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