Smoked Brisket. Nothing evokes the rolling the eyes good compliments we get like our Smoked Brisket. The only problem is that this delicacy takes darn near forever to cook correctly. Smoked Brisket also requires a smoker, which has been damaged here at headquarters, with no repair time in sight.
Without a smoker, it would seem that Smoked Brisket is a lost cause. Enter the alphageek. We posed the question: is there a way to get that smokey flavor and yet complete the dish before the game kicks off at 8PM?
This technique is simple: cook the brisket over charcoal and wood for 1-2 hours. Then, place the brisket in a pressure cooker for about an hour to complete the cooking. Then slice and enjoy.
How does this work? We have read over and over that the majority of the smoke flavor enters the meat at the beginning of cooking. We thought that might be a good way to get the Weber grill involved. The Weber is easy to use and clean, unlike the smoker which can be quite a burden to use and then clean. This technique avoids all of that hassle. One just fires up a large batch of charcoal, adds some wood chips and then off we go. Below is the brisket we started with on a 22" Weber grill.
We then placed the lid on the grill and just walked away. No temperature probes, no further monitoring and no hassle. We came back about 1.5 hours later, to the view below.
Now we have some brisket that has cooked for about an hour or so. If one cuts off an end, the taste is already there, but the tenderness that brisket needs is nowhere to be found. Usually, that is where the hours of cooking come into play. Rather than wait, we cut the brisket into chunks to place in the pressure cooker. We have a small pressure cooker here, so it took a couple of batches for a 10 lb brisket. Below is the brisket before we placed it in the pressure cooker. One can tell that this cut of meat is not yet ready, just by looking.
The next picture below is after one hour of cooking. The meat is so tender, it was sliced with one hand, just to show off. There is a smoke ring in the meat from the earlier cooking on the grill and the meat is tender like a great brisket should be. The big deal is that this was the easiest EVER brisket to make and the results are right up there with the best I have made, or purchased at the local smoke pit.
If you are looking for great food with amazing time savings, give this technique a try. You do not need anything fancy to get started.