Remove the whole defrosted brisket from its packaging. Wipe away any excess juices with paper towel, and discard.
Use a sharp boning knife to trim the fat cap down, leaving roughly ½ cm coverage over the entire brisket. Flip the brisket over to expose the leaner side, and trim away any excess chunks of fat. Some fat left on this side is fine.
PRO TIP – Make sure your brisket is as cold as possible when trimming. Its safer and easier to trim the fat when it’s cold (you can pop it into the freezer for 20 minutes to firm up the very edges to make it even easier)
Next, shape the brisket by cutting away any sharp corners and rounding them off. An ‘aerodynamic’ looking brisket is much less likely to have burnt edges.
If your brisket surface is dry to touch; apply some sort of binder to help the rub stick. You can use any liquid – water, mustard, hot sauce, oil etc. The sole purpose is to ensure as much seasoning sticks as possible, not for flavour.
Let the meat do the talking – mix together (by volume not weight) 1 part coarse sea salt (kosher salt works well) and 1 part coarse black pepper. Apply an even spread of the rub mix to all sides of the brisket. You can use any rub you want, however try not to use anything with too much sugar. As over the long cooking time it can burn and taste bitter.
Get your barbecue/smoker up to 120c. Place the brisket onto your smoker as far away from the heat source as possible. For the first 3-4 hours just monitor the temperature to make sure you’re holding steady. The occasional short spikes or dips in temperature are fine and nothing to worry about.
PRO TIP - Fat side up works well on an offset smoker but you may want to cook fat side down if you’re using a smoker where the heat source is coming from below
After 3-4 hours check to make sure your brisket isn’t burning on the edges. If its looking a little too dark or crunchy – use a spray bottle filled with water or apple cider vinegar to cool the surface off. You may want to rotate the brisket if the colour looks uneven. You’re looking for a dark mahogany colour.
Continue to cook the brisket for a further 3-4hours, checking in every hour or so to spray down any burnt areas. Between 6-8 hours your brisket should be looking mostly black, the bark that has formed will begin to become dry and fat cap will be almost completely rendered. Check that its time to wrap your brisket by using your finger to poke the fat cap – if it feels squidgy and the fat stays depressed when you poke it – its time to wrap!
Once the surface fat has rendered, remove the brisket from the smoker and tear off as much butcher paper as needed to tightly wrap entire brisket. Making sure it is completely sealed and unlikely to leak.
PRO TIP – The tighter you can wrap your brisket the more bark you’ll have at the end. Loosely wrapped briskets tend to steam and wash away the crunchy, smokey, salty bark you’ve worked hard to create!
Put the wrapped brisket back onto the smoker. At this point you can raise your temperatures up to 135c. You wont burn anything and the juices are locked in by the butcher paper. This higher temp will speed things up.
At intervals of 1 hour – use a skewer or a thermometer probe to check the doneness. You want the centre of the brisket to feel like a bag of melted butter when probed. This usually happens anywhere between 93c – 98c. But cook it to tenderness, not to temperature. There should be almost no resistance when probed.
Once the thickest part of the flat muscle is feeling tender, remove the brisket from the smoker and allow to rest. A big piece of meat like this carries a lot of heat momentum, meaning it will continue to cook for some time once it’s been removed from the smoker. This is called the ’carryover’. A minimum of one hour at room temp will do, but you can slow the process down by putting the brisket into a coolbox for a few hours (to prevent the brisket overcooking - wait for the carryover to stop before placing in a coolbox).
PRO TIP – The longer the rest, the better brisket! Serve your brisket at around 65c. If you can slow the drop in temperature to 65c by placing it into a coolbox or into an oven on a low heat; you will be rewarded with a much juicer, tender brisket.
If you're recreating this superb recipe, make sure you use our fantastic Australian Wagyu Brisket. This cut is perfect for the BBQ or smoking and features incredible marbling throughout with generous fat covering that brings sensational flavour.
For more, you can also browse our full range of Wagyu brisket, where you will find plenty of cuts to choose from.