If we are to believe our butcher, the Beef Hammer will be a big hit this summer. A Beef Hammer is a beef shank that has been artfully carved with an extra piece of bare bone to form a kind of club. That’s how the Beef Hammer got its name.
You can certainly appreciate the Beef Hammer if you love a spectacular piece of meat such as the tomahawk steak. This cut of meat is doing very well on Instagram.
There may be a thick piece of membrane around the beef hammer. You will have to remove this. Start with a sharp and flexible knife and pull up the membrane as you cut along the meat. That’s how you go all the way around. You can leave the fat. The amount of fat in a shank is not much anyway, and the meat can use that little bit.
Because we cook the meat until it is so soft that it falls off the bone, it is helpful to tie the meat. If you don’t do this, you will no longer get the Beef Hammer as one piece from the barbecue. You don’t have to tie it very tight.
After binding, the meat goes into the dry rub. First, we brush the meat with Tabasco. Partly because we need something that the dry rub will stick to. On the other hand, we have the idea that we taste Tabasco in the final product.
The dry rub is a mix of classics such as salt, black pepper, paprika powder, garlic and onion powder. We took roasted onion powder. It smells and tastes so great that every dry rub immediately improves.
We build up our kamado for indirect cooking of 120ºC (248F). We place a drip tray on the SloRoller to collect the dripping fat. If you don’t do this, the fat will fall on the hot plate and start to smell.
We smoke this Beef Hammer with two chunks of beech wood. It is a large piece of meat, so you can use heavier smoke flavours such as oak and hickory if you like. You can use any fruit wood if you want a more subtle smoky flavour.
After a few hours, the meat has seen enough smoke, and you can wrap it to speed up the cooking. This can be done in aluminium foil but also butcher paper. In aluminium foil, the cooking will go a little faster because the steam will be kept in the packaging. Butcher paper has the advantage that the packaging continues to breathe so that the built-up crust remains firmer.
From a core temperature of about 93ºC (199F), you can check the tenderness of the meat by sticking a toothpick or the probe of your thermometer into it. The meat is tender if it can go in and out without much resistance. That 93ºC (199F) is therefore, not sacred. Sometimes you cook the meat to 96 or even 99ºC (205 or 210F) until the meat is to your liking.
Before you unwrap the meat, let it rest first. The moisture in the meat can distribute itself better, and the soft fat will start to solidify again so that the meat does not immediately dry up when you pull it apart.
We always let large pieces of meat rest in an old cooler. This way, it can stay warm for hours. Very handy if you are ready in time, but the rest of the family still needs to be ready to eat.
If you want the most oohs and ahs, you cut the rope at the table. Then the Beef Hammer looks most like a club until the last minute. If you cut the strings loose, the meat will immediately come off the bone and collapse.
If you make the Beef Hammer too, let us know in the comments below. Or better! Could you take a photo and post it on Instagram? Tag @bbqhelden so we can see what you made.
- 1 beef hammer
For the dry rub
- 1 tbsp sea salt
- 1 tbsp coarsely ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp roasted onion powder
- 2 tsp garlic granulate
- 2 tsp paprika powder
- Remove the outer membranes from the meat. Mix the ingredients for the dry rub.
- Coat the meat with a thin layer of Tabasco and sprinkle the dry rub in an even layer over all sides of the meat.
- Prepare a barbecue with an indirect temperature of 120ºC (248F) and a chunk of smoke wood.
- Smoke the beef hammer for 3 hours until the dry rub has formed a dry crust.
- Wrap the meat in aluminium foil or butcher paper and heat the barbecue to 150ºC (302F).
- Place the wrapped beef hammer back on the grate.
- Insert a thermometer into the meat and close the lid.
- Check at a core temperature of 93ºC (199F) whether the meat is tender. Otherwise, continue cooking for a few more degrees.
- Let the wrapped beef hammer rest for another half hour to 45 minutes.