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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 11-20-2013, 02:34 PM   #1
BecknCO
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Default What should I do with bratwurst?

So I got a couple pounds of "original" bratwurst and I have to cook this and eat this as part of a market research study. I'm not the biggest hot dog or brat guy, but I enjoy it every now and then.

What would you suggest for a recipe? I've got a little store bought kraut, mustard and some decent rolls. I was thinking of grilling them, but I've been reading all this stuff about beer and onion boils that sound good too. They told me that I can prepare it however I want or use it as part of a recipe too.

What's your favorite method or recipe?
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Unread 11-20-2013, 02:51 PM   #2
cheeaa
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Man, you cant go wrong with straight up grilling them and that usually what I do with a bit of a reverse sear to get a little smoke to them, but holy crap are they remarkable when you cook them part of the way in a beer/butter/onion bath then grill them to finish.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 02:56 PM   #3
aawa
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I just smoke them. I fire up my mini put them in the smoker till they are done.

Here is a picture of a hotlink and a brat that I did on my mini when I first built it.


It was done with applewood. I also have used cherry wood, pecan, and oak on brats before. I lean more towards applewood and cherrywood for brats. I used to beer bath them, I used to grill them. But nothing beats a simply smoked brat in my world. Served on a potato roll hotdog bun and some spicy brown mustard.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 02:56 PM   #4
sslak
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Here's how I do brats - and I'm from Wisconsin...so I have LOTS of experience. (I know other ways, but here's my favorite - simple, but you can't argue the results)

1. Get a slow cooker going and get a beer bath going with some sliced yellow onions (break them up into rings). Beer can be anything amber or lighter - you don't want dark beers. A cheap lager or pilsner works fine, Miller, PBR, Blatz, etc, save the microbrews for drinking. You don't want it to boil, it's just to hold the brats in so they soak up flavor. Let it get hot - when it starts to smell good, it's ready!

2 - Fire up the weber kettle (or whatever grill you have) and cook them hot, indirect until they start to get firm - I check doneness is entirely by feel. They should get a nice color on them, if you feel you need more color, get a little sear over the coals, but not very long..a minute on each side. You don't want them to rupture - NEVER pierce the sausage...use a rounded set of tongs! NO FORKS, NO THERMAPENS!

3. Put your brats into the beer bath for a swim, cover it - let them hang out there for an hour or so, they'll soak up all the awesome beer flavor, then serve!

You can put your Kraut right into the beer as well, or you can get it hot and keep it in a different crockpot - up to you!

The great part about this, is you can have your grilling done before company arrives so you can spend more time with the guests and less time tending the grill.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 02:57 PM   #5
jlane
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I like them smoked as well. If you have any SM Spicy Apple, throw it on them and smoke away.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 02:58 PM   #6
funugy
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^^^Yeah, what they said.

Depending oh how much work I want to put into it, I will either boil in beer and onions and then put on the grill at an indirect medium/high heat to finish. Or I'll just put on a grill medium heat indirect and let cook until golden to dark brown. Serve however you like.

I like mine with or without bun, mustard, and jalapeno peppers. Don't forget the chips and beer!
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Unread 11-20-2013, 03:08 PM   #7
USMC
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Put em on a hot dog weener pole (we used clothes hangers back in the day) and cook them over an oak camp fire till they get that awesome color on em. This is usually one of our meals every weekend at the hunting camp.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 03:09 PM   #8
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I like to do mine indirect on the kettle using charcoal and a small chunk of wood. usually goes around 45-50 mins or so.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 03:09 PM   #9
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I've tried some beer boiling, but now I prefer to just smoke them around 250F. They take pretty much exactly one hour like this. I slap them on a bun, with no condiments generally. I dearly love smoked bratwurst.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 03:12 PM   #10
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I like to smoke them naked on the grate at around 275 until almost done and then toss them in a scorching hot cast iron skillet for a quick sear/firm-up. I will throw a couple on buns (with kraut if I have it), but I like them sliced on a plate just as well.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 03:34 PM   #11
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I would smoke them like many have already suggested but instead of a potato roll, I like to put them between two slices of buttered white toast.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 03:37 PM   #12
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Open fire, on the tripod grill.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 04:06 PM   #13
BecknCO
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Thanks, fellas. I definitely want to try smoking a few next time I fire up the mini, and that helps a lot with the temp - seems to be about 250-275 for about an hour - thanks. I wasn't sure if I should temp them to 160 or so, but it seems I'll ruin it if I pierce them in any way.

For the upcoming study, I'm very interested in the beer/onion boil then grill method - how much beer to onion ratio? and have you tried them any other ways? I know I can count on you guys - especially the wisconsoners!.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 04:46 PM   #14
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I'd recommend grilling indirect first and then putting them in the beer/butter/onion hot tub to get them happy. If possible, try to keep the casings from bursting during the grilling so that the juices don't cook out. 2 cans of beer, a stick of butter (not margarine) and one big onion sliced will work. If you've got a clove of garlic laying around, put that in there too. Keep the hot tub at a simmer, not a full rolling boil. the butter gives the cooked brats a nice "snap" when you bite into them.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 05:29 PM   #15
deguerre
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Brats make for some good beenie weenies too...grilled first, add to the beans, whatever recipe you like, and smoke them.
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