Where to start??
You need a LARGE pot or a new – CLEAN – 5 gallon bucket – if you use an aluminum pot get a commercial grade pot – the handles wont break off while trying to move it ( Don’t Ask! ) into the fridge for soaking overnight – this particular pot is 5 gallons and is used for soups – stews – marinara – plus brining – a plastic 5 gallon bucket is just a plastic 5 gallon bucket – not a lot of dual purposing with it . . .
Folks it’s real easy to do this – put your intended victim into the pot and add water to cover by a 1/2 inch or so – remove intended victim ( I use a 1 gallon pitcher ) and measure the amount of water in the pot – in this instance it was a 13 lb brisket – about 2 1/2 gallons of water – you can dump this water out – take a large pan and bring a measured amount of water to boil – in this case 1 gallon – I slowly added 2 1/2 cups of salt to it – stirring to dissolve – dump this into your “bucket” – add water to get the amount you need total – let it cool to room temp – if your in a hurry and you know where the water level needs to be in the pot – dump the ice out of the ice maker tray into the hot water then add water to the right level – add your brisket – put a piece of plastic wrap over the water like a “skin” and pop it in the fridge – at least 12 hrs is best – 24 hrs is better!
Big aluminum pan – 4 onions – 4 whole garlic – Slice the garlic in half – the onion 4 or 5 slices – a decent set of kitchen knives are a plus – Henckels is a real decent entry level knife that won’t break the bank and you will get a lot of good service out of them – check them out HERE
And if you need to get that “sharp” edge back get a knife sharpener – you should not have to saw or push your way through whatever your cutting – if you can cut by simply drawing the knife through with slight downward pressure – IT IS SHARP! – how do you keep your knives sharp Bruce??
With a warthog – they are Easy and Simple to use – if your sharpener isn’t easy and simple to use – you won’t use it – check Warthogs out here . . .
The garlic – love that smell . . .
And the onions of course . . .
In with the garlic – start piling onions on top . . .
About 1 tablespoon of salt and pepper on the lean side . . .
Lay the brisket over in the pan and 1 tablespoon each salt and pepper on the fat cap . . .
cover with parchment paper . . .
Seal up tight with aluminum foil – put the foil pan on a cookie sheet – the aluminum pans are not very sturdy ( Don’t Ask! ) . . .
Put it on the center rack in a cold oven – 205 degrees for 10 to 12 hours – fish it out of the juice and wrap it up in foil and let rest for about 1/2 hr – be careful handling it – it is hot!! – the juices can be strained and made into AuJus if you want – slice it up across the grain – horse radish sauce works good with it – or ground horse radish for the hardcore among us . . . And everybody will be like how did you do this? – don’t tell them the bucket of salt water and the oven did all the heavy lifting – it’s perfectly alright to let them worship you – or the brisket- or both! . . .
There are probably only a gazillion or so brine recipes on the internet – the best advice I can give you is keep it simple – this mix – the 1 cup salt to 1 gallon water thing works pretty good for beef and chicken – if you do pork you can add about 1/2 cup brown sugar to the salt/1 gallon water mix – really come out nice – turkeys are a little different – a lot of them are injected with a salt based product – one that comes to mind is Butterball – just cut the salt back to about 1/2 cup per gallon of water – the “plain label” store brands you can add a little more salt to the mix. You can brine steaks before grilling – Oh My!
Don’t be afraid to experiment – but do that on a smaller scale – it’s one thing to realize you just don’t like the way “that” came out and it’s a 1 1/2 lb chunk of pork loin vs a 10 or 12 lb pork loin – just about anything thing liquid the salt will “drag” into the meat – hot sauce – liquid smoke – use your imagination . . .
Have Fun! – Run the Gun! – and remember – Fish Heads are not the only thing I cook!!