Temperature Prevails Over Time

The General finished his presentation on brisket at the NBBQA conference in Knoxville on Saturday and he wants to thank our new friend Scott for helping in the demo!


We brought home the brisket flat, and I cooked it on Sunday. Great flavor!


As I reflect on the recent classes I’ve done, the most frequently asked question seems to be, “How long do I cook it?”

Much to the surprise of the audiences, my stock answer is, “Temperature always prevails over time.” Now why is this?

If you go by time, there is an assumption that every oven in America is calibrated the same. Much less, all the different variations of BBQ grills and smokers…some of which you can’t even begin to control the temperature. If you are cooking in Denver, 5000′ above sea level, meat is going to cook differently than in Savannah at 13′ above sea level. In Tryon, NC, where the North Carolina KCBS State Championship is held, it’s a thermal valley and I don’t know much about science, but I think that means that the air is thinner. All I do know, it that our brisket and pork butts were done significantly earlier (7:30 am) than other contests when they should be finished around 10:30 am.

What I want to encourage all of you to do is to keep strict notes of your grill temperatures and the time it takes to cook your products. Then you’ll KNOW how long it takes to cook it!

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