Here in Tucson, Arizona, summer is mostly spent indoors to avoid the high temperatures. But that’s an exciting time for us, because we can find even more creative ways to decorate and spend time in our living space! This includes hosting summer gatherings. If you’re looking to add some more flair to your home decor to show off to any guests you have coming over, Nest In The Desert has you covered! Need an idea for a recipe to serve to your guests? This Brisket with Organic Mesquite Seasoning Rub is a favorite amongst the Oro Valley foodies and is the perfect dish for your summer get-together with friends and family.
Trim the fat cap of the brisket down to 1/4”. Trim the large chunk of hard fat that sits between the point and flat muscles on the meat side of the brisket. Trim the sides and ends to be uniform in shape. Add the mustard to the entire surface of the brisket creating a light slather for the spices to adhere. Mix together the Kosher Salt and F+F Organic Mesquite Seasoning Rub, together in a shaker. Shake the spice mix evenly across all surfaces of the brisket. Let the meat sit out at room temperature for at least an hour before putting it on the smoker (this allows the meat to start cooking faster at the lower temperature. If you put a large cut of meat in the smoker cold, it will add up to an hour or more to your total cook time).
Bring smoker temperature to 250°F and add 2–3 chunks of smoking wood (Hickory, Cherry, Post-oak, etc.). For kettle smokers, add a water pan to help keep humidity at 70%–80% range.
Place the brisket fat side down if the heat source is directly below the meat; fat side up for indirect heat. The fat cap renders slowly during the long cook and will act as a barrier between the meat and the heat source helping to keep surface area from drying out.
Smoke for 3 hours without opening the smoker. This first phase is when the most important smoke absorption occurs.
As you are waiting to check the brisket after the 3-hour mark, prepare a spray bottle to mist the brisket during the next part of the cook. Fill your spray bottle with 3 parts water, 1 part apple cider vinegar, a dash of Worcestershire sauce, and a dash of your favorite hot sauce.
After the first 3 hours of the cook you should have decent color forming on the outside of the brisket. Check the moisture level by touching the surface area of the flat part of the brisket with your fingertip. Do not move or pick up the brisket as you do not want to interrupt the bark formation. The surface should be slightly sticky to the touch but not wet. If it is dry and streaky, spray the surface with the water/apple cider vinegar mixture. Making sure the surface area stays moist is key. Spray every 30 minutes or so until you wrap the brisket after it breaks stall.
After 4–5 hours of total cooking time, the internal temperature will stick at one spot usually between 150°F and 160°F. This temperature “stall” can last several hours. Make sure not to put the tip of the thermometer into the fat layer but check the muscle for accurate results.
Once the internal temperature starts climbing by more than a degree from the stalled temperature, and your bark is a dark mahogany color, it is time to take up the brisket and wrap.
Wrap in aluminum foil or butcher paper. Paper allows the steam inside to release without getting trapped inside helping the bark to darken and provide a good texture. Wrapping with foil usually speeds up the time to get the brisket probe tender but can impact bark formation. Remove the brisket from the smoker onto two pieces of butcher paper roughly 30” long a piece overlapping. Place the brisket about 1/3 of the way up the overlapping butcher paper and spritz one more time with water/vinegar mixture. Add a few shakes of the F+F Organic Mesquite Seasoning Rub and salt mixture to the surface of the meat then wrap the brisket. Place the wrapped brisket in a large aluminum pan with a cup of beef broth in the bottom. Place the pan with the brisket back in the smoker and let it cook until it is done.
Two cues to brisket being done:
Temperature: flat starts measuring 190°F to 210°F.
Feel: use the thermometer probe to check the flat and point for tenderness. Thermometer should go in and out of the brisket with little to no resistance. Check every 30 minutes until that is the texture you feel when taking the temperature.
When desired texture is reached, remove brisket from smoker and put it into another pan to rest at room temperature until the internal temperature drops to 165°F (usually an hour). Crack the wrap slightly allowing heat and steam to escape. This stops the carryover cooking and brings the temperature of the brisket to a place that is optimal for resting.
Now take that brisket out of the aluminum pan (leaving it wrapped in the butcher paper), wrap it in plastic wrap, wrap that in an old towel, and place it in an empty cooler for 1–4 hours. This resting is a key step to getting the brisket as juicy as possible.