From hikers on the go to health nuts who want more protein in their diet, jerky is making a comeback these days. But if you are thinking that this is the kind of horrible dried up and dry tasting beef jerky you see at the corner convenience store or local gas station checkout stand, you are wrong. This is a new healthy and tasty kind of jerky that will have your mouth watering just at the thought of biting into it. Best of all, you can make this at home and have control over the quality and type of ingredients you add to it. So, check these three idea out for making some beef jerky that you will want to use for more than quick snacks while on the go. You may even give it as gifts you will love it so much!
Berries and Venison
Yes, this is indeed the legendary pemmican that so many Native American tribes ate to keep their energy up while on the hunt. In fact, for many tribes this was the quick go to food that helped them to last the winter. The trick is to start with meat that is softly marbled with a bit of fat, and make it venison if you can get your hands on it. Cut the meat into strips about an inch in width when it is still a bit frozen. That makes it easier to cut evenly. The next step is very important.
Soak that meat in berry juice for about twenty-four hours, to make sure the berries have fully sunk into the meat. Once you have soaked the strips of meat in the juice, lay them out on racks in the oven. Set to a low temperature, leaving the door ajar a bit so that the air circulates ensuring the meat will dry slowly and evenly. Leave it overnight to thoroughly dry out. Store in an airtight container.
Beef, Lemon and Black Pepper
I have found this particular type of beef jerky to be tasty for my kids. I start with a cut of high grade beef that has been slightly frozen. Cut this into strips, just as you do for the venison in the recipe above. Then take this beef and let it return to room temperature, as it soaks in fresh lemons. The acid in the lemons will tenderize the beef making it tastier.
Leave it in the lemons for a few hours or overnight in the fridge. Then roll these juicy lemony strips of beef in fresh cracked black pepper. These are then dried in the oven in the same way we described above. The result is a citrusy and peppery jerked beef treat everyone will love.
Asian Turkey Jerky
While it is true that most turkey is not that tasty when dried, the secret to great turkey jerky is in the sauce. Because turkey meat is easy to slice thin, you can have lovely thin slices of turkey that will soak up Asian spices perfectly.
If you have an Asian grocery in your town, try heading out to it and cruising the sauces aisle. You will see all kinds of interesting fruit and spice sauces that will make that turkey jerky tasty and a step away from the old traditional style. Follow the basic steps above and expect to be surprised.