Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 10 hours or so
Serves: 10, at least
One 10-pound beef brisket “whole packer” cut
Rub, recipe follows
½ cup Coke (or beef broth)
1. Trim: Trim most of the fat away, leaving a mere 1/8th inch. Season the brisket with ½ teaspoon salt per pound. (If you’re on your game, do this step the night before.) Rub the brisket with a little oil. Pat on the rub, all over.
2. Smoke: Build or spark a low fire on one side of the grill. If you’ve got a digital thermometer, stab one probe into the meat and set the other on the grates. Keep the grate temp at 225 and set the brisket over indirect heat, fat side up. Let the brisket cook, undisturbed, until the meat temp reaches 150 degrees, about 5 hours. If you like, toss wood chips on the grates regularly to give the meat a smoky taste.
3. Wrap: For reasons that are beyond anyone but the BBQ geek, the temperature tends to stall out at 150 degrees. To prevent this, execute the Texas Crutch, which is to say, wrap the meat in two layers of heavy foil. Pour the Coke into the bottom of the foil packet, seal it tightly, and return it to the low, indirect heat.
4. Wait: Let the meat braise, undisturbed, until the internal temperature reaches 200 degrees, another 5 hours or so.
5. Hold: Lift the foil-wrapped meat off the grill and set it in a cooler lined with kitchen towels. It will hold hot and juicy for hours.
6. Serve: When ready to serve, unwrap. Set aside any juices. Grill the brisket directly over medium-high heat just to crisp up the exterior, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Slice (see Provenance), douse with reserved juices, and serve.
Provenance: Most of the techniques here are distilled from Craig Meathead Goldwyn’s site, Amazingribs.com. Consult the site for a detailed explanation of how to slice a brisket.
Rub: Toss together 3 tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, 1 tablespoon ground cumin, 2 teaspoons mustard powder, 2 teaspoons garlic powder, 2 teaspoons chili powder and 1 teaspoon ground cayenne.