The brisket is the meat cut you get from the breast or lower chest portion of a cow. With its juicy texture, the beef brisket has found many fans worldwide. While many people know how to smoke beef brisket, not many know how to slice the meat properly. In this article, we will give you a brief idea of how to slice a brisket raw and smoked so that you don’t find any difficulty in this process in the future.
In all types of briskets be it raw and cooked you will find two types of muscles – the point and flat. A white and thick layer of fat separates the muscles. You will find a lot of fat content in the point muscle.
It’s easy to identify this muscle when you get a brisket because this muscle has a lot of marbling on it. The flat muscle is the one that contains less fat.
We will see how to slice a brisket flat and a brisket point muscle in the following sections.
How to Slice a Brisket Raw Version
Here are some steps you need to follow if you want to slice a raw brisket:
- Ensure that you buy reddish and slightly moist brisket, as this type of meat tends to be quite tender when smoked.
- If you’re looking for flavorful briskets, you should focus on the pointcut. However, if you want lean meat that’s fit for slicing while being served, you can opt for flat cuts. Many people buy whole briskets, which contain both the point and flat muscles.
- The next step in how to slice a brisket perfectly is to remove the white and thick fatty layer found on the point portion. Keep a sharp knife under this layer and keep sliding gently until the layer gets trimmed off completely. You can also choose to keep some of the fatty layers on the brisket if you want to.
- The next step is to trim off the small fatty portions found on the brisket’s flat portion. Push the knife under these fatty portions and slice off the fats.
- If you have bought a whole brisket, you need to check the portion between the point and flat muscles. You’ll find a thick white layer of fat there. Keep your knife on the edge and slice off the fat veins completely. Here again, you can wish to keep some fat on the brisket, if you want to.
How to Slice a Smoked Brisket
If you have already done the hard work of smoking the brisket, slicing it shouldn’t be a great challenge, provided you follow the steps below:
- Finding out the grain of the meat is very important. Only then you can carry on with slicing brisket across the grain. You can find the grain on the point or flat cut. The grain is the portion of the meat where you’ll find long strands like rubber bands running across it.
- The next step is to cut across the grains in the point and flat cut of the meat. You can find the grains running in different directions in both these muscles. Keep the knife close to these and cut against the grains. Slice into pieces near these grains.
- You can also keep cutting against the grain on the flat muscle until you reach the point side. Then you change the meat’s direction to 90 degrees so that your knife is perpendicular to the grain. This is how you can learn to carve a brisket perfectly. When you keep cutting against these grains, you can be sure that your brisket slices will be tender and juicy.
Making Thin Slices
Do you want to make very thin slices of the beef brisket that you have cooked?
Here are the simple steps to follow to get thin and juicy slices that you can enjoy:
- Wrap the cooked brisket in aluminum foil and allow it to rest for 24 hours.
- After 24 hours, use a very sharp knife to slice along the meat to make thin pieces. It’s best if you could ensure that each piece is as thick as a pencil. You can use your knife to make short but effective strokes against the grain while making slices. At this stage, you can trim off any extra fat, if you want to.
How to Cut Corned Beef Brisket
After cleaning and cooking the corned beef, wrap it in aluminum foil for about 15 minutes before you proceed to cut it.
Here’s how you can make even slices of corned beef:
- Use a very sharp knife. It would be best if the knife’s length and the width of the corned beef brisket are the same. This will ensure that you get neat and even slices while cutting.
- With the help of a metal fork, make sure that the meat stays in its place on the cutting board, while you start the slicing process.
- When you pull apart the whole corned beef, you will notice a thick and white fat layer in the center. Slice it off with the knife. The meat is then divided into two parts – the bigger and leaner portion known as the flat and the smaller and fatter portion known as the point.
- We explained earlier that you need to trim off the fat layer on both these muscles. You need to follow the same steps for corned beef as well.
- The next step is also similar, where you need to identify the grains to begin slicing across the grains. On the point and flat muscles, the grains will be arranged in different directions. Keep turning the meat so that your knife is perpendicular to the grains, helping you cut across the grains perfectly.
- Hold the meat with a metal fork and start by slicing the linear portion first, as it’s easy to make slices in this portion. Keep moving your knife back and forth to make very thin slices against the grain.
We hope you would have got a fair idea of how to slice a brisket properly with the above steps.
You can tweak the process slightly to suit your convenience, but remember to always cut against the grain and remove fat layers to a maximum extent, for best results.