This traditional dried meat, made from lean flank steak, is very chewy and requires strong teeth! It is generally sliced with the grain in very thin strips. Slicing is easier if the meat if partially frozen. Season it with soy sauce or coarse salt and pepper.
Another good choice of meat for jerky is heart. There is no fat in the tissues, and when partially frozen it can be sliced very thin. It is a good keeper. Hamburger can also be used. Mix it with desired seasonings, spread it onto Teflon sheets to dry, then transfer to paper towels to absorb any fat.
Marinades for jerky can be store-bought or made-to-order. Place strips in a container, cover with marinade, and refrigerate 8 to 12 hours. Drain, then dry on Teflon sheets. When partially dry, turn over directly onto the trays. The temperature should be between 105° and 115°.
Here are my favorite jerky marinade recipes:
Cooked meat can be dried into tasty tidbits. Cut into cubes, sprinkle with seasoning salt, and dry. This is a good way to save every bit of left-overs. Dried cubes of meat can be ground into a powder to add to an instant soup.
To dry fish from the freezer, thaw it partially, then trim it and cut into bite-sized pieces. Thaw completely, drain, and season with powdered marinade or seasoning salt. Dry thoroughly and store in tight containers.
Chicken is usually cooked, then dried. Use fat-free pieces, cut into small cubes, and dry. Excellent for nibbling and for instant soups.
Chicken Dressing Leather is tasty and easy to make. Blend together the chicken pieces and cooked dressing made with bread, celery, onions, and chicken broth. Spread out to dry on Teflon sheets. Delicious!
Refrigerate or freeze for long-term storage.
Use our suggestions to create your own jerkies.
Drying strips of raw meat is one of the oldest methods of preserving meats. It has been used for hundreds of years by American Indians. Today, jerky is a favorite snack both at home and on the trail. Here is how you can enjoy your own gourmet varieties.
Begin with very lean cuts of meat. Flank steak is our favorite - it is very low in fat and has no bones. Take advantage of specials and buy and dry in bulk.
Trim off any visible fat.
Partially freeze meat. This will make it much easier to slice.
Slice meat obliquely against the grain. Cut strips VERY thin.
Place meat strips in a tight container, cover with marinade and refrigerate for 8 to 12 hours. When using a dry marinade, generously sprinkle both sides of meat with seasoning, arrange in a single layer in a tight container and refrigerate.
To dry, place meat strips on TEFLON SHEETING, when jerky is partially done turn over directly on to screening. Dry between 110° and 120°. Jerky drys quickly, usually in 8-12 hours. Jerky is done when it is completely dry - wheen cooled it should crack but not break when bent.