Beef Jerky

Categories:Meat Dishes
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madnad

About 12 months ago, I bought a dehydrator so that I could dry iced cookies quicker in order to get on that all important second layer of detail. I justified the expense (which wasn’t that huge actually) to my husband saying that we could also use to it to dry bananas (he loves the chewy ones) and also to make beef jerky. I had him at beef jerky. A year later, and he has finally made me make good on my promise.

I like jerky, but not as big a fan as my husband is. I am sure he could sit and gnaw his way through an entire cow’s worth of jerky if I let him. As snacks go, its pretty good though. Majority of the fat is removed before marinating, and it’s high in protein. Great for gym days, or taking with you for an energy boost if you are one of those outdoorsy types.

I have included the basic marinade in the recipe but feel free to play with this a little by adding other flavours such as chilli flakes or pepper corns.

Safety

There are some people that have concerns about the safety of jerky, because it is essentially dried raw meat. I can assure you it is quite safe, especially beef. The main concern with beef is E.coli, which is potentially present on the outside of the joint. If you are at all concerned, then you can wash the outside of the joint in vinegar. The salt in the marinade will help make the meat inhospitable to bacteria, plus bacteria needs moisture to thrive, so dried goods are usually pretty safe too. On top of all that, I dried the jerky at the highest temp my dehydrator would go – 70°C/160°F which is high enough to kill E.coli and Salmonella. Put it this way, it’s no worse than eating a medium-rare steak. Other meats, such as chicken , turkey or pork, are cooked prior to drying.

Beef Jerky

Ingredients

  • 2kg Beef (lean brisket, silverside, or rump)
  • 250ml Soy Sauce
  • 250ml Worcestershire Sauce
  • 250ml Teriyaki Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Liquid Smoke (optional)
  • 3 tablespoons Spice Rub (see notes)
  • 3 cloves Garlic
  • 3 tablespoons Brown Sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Honey (or black treacle)

Directions

1. If your joint is rolled, take off all the string and lay out as flat as possible. Cut off any visible fat. The less fat, the longer your jerky will last
2. Place the meat on a baking tray, and place in the oven for 1-2 hours. You don't want it to freeze completely, but you want it firm enough to help slice thinly (or if you ask nicely, your butcher may slice this for you)
3. Place the meat into a bowl or resealable bag. Mix all the marinade ingredients together, and pour over the top of the meat
4. Smoosh the meat around to ensure everything is coated. If using a bowl, ensure everything is submerged. Cover the bowl or seal the bag and place in the fridge overnight at least
5. Line the bottom of your dehydrator with some greaseproof paper, then switch on to at least 70°C/160°F for 10 minutes with just the lid on to warm up while you prepare the trays
6. Place the meat on the trays, close together but not overlapping. Stack the trays in the dehydrator and leave to dry
7. Your jerky should take about 4-5 hours, and will be done when it feels stiff, but you can still bend it without snapping
8. Store in resealable bag on the counter for 4-6 months

Note

Recipe: 14 Spice Dry Rub

You can also freeze jerky if you need really long term storage. Remove as much air as possible from your resealable bag (if you have a vacuum sealer, even better) and freeze for up to 12 months.

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