Monday, April 18, 2011

Homemade Beef Jerky

As part of the Paleo/Primal lifestyle you eat a lot of meat, vegetables, fruit and nuts. Although fruit, and homemade trail mix made from nuts and raisins are handy on-the-go snacks, I'm often looking for something more savory rather than sweet to grab and run. Jerky is a good choice, but I haven't yet been able to find a jerky in the store that doesn't either contain a lot of sugar or nitrates. So, being the kind of person that likes to make things myself, I looked up recipes for making my own Jerky. It really didn't sound that hard, and since I have a dehydrator in my cabinet and some grass-fed beef in my freezer, I decided to give it a try.

1. Select a cut of grass-fed beef with minimal fat (we get our beef from a ranch in Oregon that is totally grass fed). I used a 1 inch thick round steak, then cut it into very thin strips about 1 inch in width and no more than 1/4 inch thick.

2. Marinate the strips in a mixture of spices and seasonings for several hours or overnight. I used about 1/4 C Worcester sauce, 1/3 C Soy Sauce, and 1 tsp garlic powder. You can throw in some heat here, if that's your thing, by adding chili powder, red pepper flakes or other head-inducing spices. A lot of the recipes I found also called for liquid smoke, but I didn't have any and didn't really think I'd like it. So my marinade only had the 3 ingredients.

3. Dehydrate the marinated strips of beef in your oven or in a dehydrator at 160 degrees for about 5 hours. If using your oven, you want it on the lowest temperature possible, then you may need to prop the door open with a wad of tin foil to bring the temperature down even more to about 150-160 degrees for about 5-6 hours until the meat becomes...jerky-like.

This jerky turned out really nice! Everyone in the family loves it, so I may need to make some more if I plan to get any to use for my grab-and-go snacks. So, Ava, can I get another 1/4 of a cow? :)

1 comment:

  1. Wow, I have never thought of making my own Beef Jerky. I think I’m going to have to try it. In case you are interested, a great place to buy your grass fed beef is from La Cense Beef. They have a wonderful website full of information and lots of meat to choose from.



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