Barbeque beef brisket might just be the very beginning of barbeque itself. And it is certainly the king of meats in Texas barbeque circles. Although brisket has a reputation of being difficult to master, the truth is it is as simple as following a few steps. We will create the perfect barbequed beef brisket using three easy recipes.
This beef brisket recipe is best cooked on a charcoal barbeque pit, which includes a fire pit. If you do not own one, you can use a gas or charcoal grill, where you have the fire going on one side, and cook indirectly on the other.
1 8-10 pound beef brisket, packer-trimmed
2 cups of Texas Dry Rub (see below)
2-3 cups Beer Mop Sauce (see below), in bowl
Use a packer-trimmed brisket for this recipe. That is a brisket with a thick layer of fat on one side. It usually comes sealed in a tight plastic wrap. On the day before you will be eating, pat the dry rub all throughout the meat, making sure to rub it into every fold. Place the brisket in a plastic bag and refrigerate overnight.
First thing in the morning, remove the brisket from the refrigerator and let it sit on the kitchen counter so it will get closer to room temperature. In the meantime, get the fire to your barbeque pit going to about 210 degrees Fahrenheit.
After an hour or so, when you, the mop sauce, and everything else is ready, place the brisket on the opposite side of the fire pit (the cool side).
At this point, many brisket cooks, say to place the brisket fat-side up so the fat helps baste the meat. We will go against the grain here, as this recipe seems to work better by placing the brisket fat-side down, so the fat can drip down into the fire, causing smoke to rise up and flavor the meat. Close the lid of the barbeque pit.
Maintain a temperature between 180 and 220 degrees, and cook the beef brisket for 1 to 1 1/4 hours per pound of meat. About every hour, when you feel like you just have to peek, go ahead and dab some beer mop sauce on the meat.
After done, shut down your fire, remove the barbequed brisket, and let it sit for 20 minutes. You will see where the brisket is divided into two pieces by a layer of fat. Cut through that layer to separate the two pieces. Then trim off the thickest parts of fat from bot pieces and slice them thin against the grain of the meat.
Serve barbeque sauce on the side, if desired. But never drench the meat in sauce. A little goes a long way.
Texas Dry Rub Recipe
3/4 cup paprika
1/4 cup quality chile powder
1/4 cup ground black pepper
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup salt
2 tablespoons onion powder
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 tablespoon ground cayenne pepper
Mix the spices thoroughly in a bow. This makes 2 cups of dry rub. You can store any dry rub you do not use in a sealable jar for up to 3 months.
Beer Mop Sauce Recipe
1 12 ounce can of beer
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup vegetable, corn, or canola oil
1/2 medium onion, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons of Texas Dry Rub (from above)
1 1/2 teaspoons worcestershire sauce
Mix everything together. Apply mop sauce with a small string mop made for barbeque. You can use a pastry brush if you want.
Billy Bristol is the writer and editor for Food in Texas, a website devoted to the celebration of tradition homemade Texas Food. With simple recipes and cooking ideas that bring out the best in classic Texas cuisine, Food in Texas is creating its own culinary legacy.