Friday, June 8, 2012

Beef Brisket Barbecue

I'm always glad to stumble across a good barbecue (or bar-b-que or BBQ) joint. Early this week I did just that. There's a place in Philadelphia called Deke's Bar-B-Que. I'm not kidding about this. I stopped in a couple of times this week and enjoyed a favorite of mine, beef brisket barbecue.

There are many great online resources for barbecue. One that I like for brisket is at They go into great detail on Texas-style barbecue brisket, which when done right is full of flavor and melts in your mouth. But doing it right takes a bit of work, and a lot of time.

Brisket is a large cut of beef from the chest of the steer. It's a tough cut of meat if not cooked "low and slow." That is, at a low temperature, and for a long time. Typical choices for brisket are 250°F  or even less, and up to 15 or more hours of cooking time depending on weight. A target internal temperature is about 190-195°F. Before cooking, a rub is used. This can be as simple as salt and pepper, or it can be a more complex mix of herbs and spices. 

Keeping the meat moist when cooking for so long is achieved by "mopping" it with a baste or spritzing it with water. Some even go so far as to inject the meat with a baste to keep it moist from within, and to keep the internal temperature down. Others claim that all that basting and spritzing is robbing the brisket of a chance to form a good crust. 

After such a long time cooking in the barbecue pit, the brisket needs to rest for several hours to allow the juices to set before being sliced.

I'm a big fan of beef brisket barbecue – as a diner. I can't claim expertise at the barbecue. My brisket cooking experience is limited to a few times in a slow cooker, and a few times in the oven. In both of those methods, low and slow is still the rule and the results were always very good. But the best tasting brisket is slow cooked over hard woods on the barbecue. Texans do this meal right.

Got a favorite brisket recipe, or a favorite place to eat brisket? Leave a comments and let us know.


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  1. My son's high school graduation party is tomorrow and I'll be smoking ribs for the party. The ribs are currently waiting rubbed and ready and I just put the mob I made in the fridge for tomorrow. I try to keep the temperature right around 200F and smoke for about 10 hours. Early start...

    1. That sounds great! I usually boil my ribs before I rub them and then slow cook them. Not sure why. Just what I was taught to do.

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