Instead of a turkey this year, we made a brisket on our new BBQ. Usually I cut the meat into two or three smaller meals, but this time I decided to make the whole thing. That meant there was a lot of leftovers for us.
The brisket was larger than a turkey and a much more solid piece of meat. After our initial dinner, we still had more than 3/4 of the meat remaining. Since then I have had a few slices on sandwiches as well as frying a couple of pieces to go with eggs and toast.
But my favorite leftover has to be the brisket soup my wife made in our slow cooker. It was a tasty beef and barley soup that infused the Smokey flavor of the meat into each spoonful.
Tomorrow night’s dinner will be beef dip and fries. Perhaps we will be closer to finishing the meat at that point. With so much beef in our diets in such a short time- that means we will likely move away from red meat for a few weeks. I also can’t wait until spring and summer to start enjoying fresh vegetables once more.
Over the past few years, I have been perfecting my ability to make a smoked bbq brisket. I usually only end up making three or four of them a year. That way it keeps the family desiring more and doesn’t overdo the enjoyment of the meal. Last night was the largest one I have ever made.
We do not have a smoker, so I have become resourceful in using our bbq. I put a smoker box on the side burners and place the brisket on the opposite side. I keep the temperature between 200° and 250° allowing the indirect heat to slowly cook the meat over the course of a few hours. Every hour or so, I add some more water soaked hickory wood chips. But before the meat goes on the grill- I have to prepare it.
We have found the best cut of meat for the price is down at the Costco in the USA. Once I open the meat I give it a quick rinse and pat it down with paper towel. Sometimes I’ll trim some of the larger fatty bits if it’s over an inch thick. Then I salt the entire thing, followed by pouring some soy sauce and brushing bbq sauce all around it. Next I add a dry hickory seasoning on the entire brisket to create a crust once the meat is cooked.
As the brisket smokes, my entire neighborhood smells heavenly for hours. (It’s amazing how olfactory senses can add to the enjoyment of a meal.) Last night I also made a different type of potato salad. I roasted some cubed potatoes tossed in olive oil and covered in garlic, oregano, paprika, salt and pepper. I baked the potatoes in the oven for 30 minutes turning them every 10 minutes so as not to burn the bottom.
Afterwards I allowed the potatoes to cool in the fridge before adding some chopped up fried garlic sausage, a bit of mayonnaise and two mashed avocados. The meal turned out beautifully. We shared our dinner with a couple of friends and only ate about half the brisket. That means leftovers for lunches!
I love to cook. 90% of the time my meals turn out perfect. The other times, I screw up & when I screw up, I screw up big. Today has me worried… So I have a back up plan.
We are attempting to make a brisket for the first time. However, we don’t have a smoker. I borrowed one from a friend, but upon doing some online research, it’s not the right smoker for tonight’s dinner. So I am trying to use my gas grill with a smoker box and indirect heat. It will take all day. I am hoping for it to be ready by dinner time. The rub recipe is one a friend from work sent me. His advice was to cook at 190 for what seems like a gazzilion hours. So, I woke up at 06:30am and started the meat. Halfway through the day, it smells fantastic but still has a long way to go.
Usually I BBQ my meats. I have mastered the cooking times of everything I’ve ever made. Like I said, 90% of the time the food turns out juicy and flavorful. The other 10% is me rushing. Waiting patiently all day to see the final product on a new dish is killing me. I want it to turn out perfect so badly. Ugh! The suspense!
What’s more terrifying is the fact that we are having some people stop by for dinner as well. Remember I said I have a back up plan? Well, it’s more my wife’s back up plan. She is using the slow cooker and making a Dr. Pepper Pulled Pork. It’s one she makes often and it is amazing. So if I fail on the brisket, at least people will be fed on the pork. I feel like I’m the Swedish Chef facing off against Gordon Ramsey. Both cooking icons, both have different styles.
Slow and steady. Slow and steady.
I must learn patience. I wonder how long that takes? Ugh.