Note: fans of this blog may notice that the rub and sauce recipes are recycled from other posts!
- One beef brisket, fat cap trimmed to 1/4 inch thick.
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin (freshly toasted and ground from whole seeds would be best)
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika (regular paprika would also be OK)
- 1 teaspoon ground cayenne or chipotle chile powder (1/2 tsp if you don't like heat - wimp!)
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- one 8 ounce can tomato sauce
- 1 cup cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup molasses (or brown sugar, but I like the molasses better)
- 2 tablespoons prepared yellow mustard
- ½ tablespoon onion powder
- ½ tablespoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon celery seeds
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
Thoroughly mix all rub ingredients (I like to pulse them together in a food processor). Work the rub into all surfaces of the brisket. Tightly wrap with plastic wrap, put on a tray or sheet pan, and marinate in the refrigerator for 4-8 hours, flipping 2-3 times during the marinade (if you can).
Mix all sauce ingredients together in a saucepan. Head over medium heat until bubbles start to form, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently. Adjust sweetness with 2-4 tablespoons of molasses/sugar if you like it less tangy. Allow to cool to room temperature.
Heat the smoker to 225 degrees. Place the marinaded brisket in smoker, fat side up, and apply smoke for 2-3 hours. Baste with sauce and let smoke for another hour. Flip the brisket over, baste with sauce again, and smoke for another 3-4 hours. At this point, it generally has enough smoke flavor for me, so I remove from the smoker, baste with more sauce, and cook in a low oven or crock pot for another 4-6 hours to tenderize it. If you like your brisket super smokey, or have a very thick brisket, you may want to smoke it longer instead of bringing it indoors. Once the brisket is fork tender, let cool for 10-20 minutes and slice across the grain.