Monday, September 13, 2010

Most Excellent Beef Jerky

A good friend of mine over at gave me this recipe last year, and I have had excellent results with it. I've tweaked it a little for my own tastes (I like strong flavors and lots of spice), and I encourage others to make it to their own flavor. Here is a very good base from which to start, though.
I try to keep my sodium intake down, so I use the low-salt varieties of teriyaki  sauce and soy sauce.
Hint: Let your meat become slightly frozen before slicing, it helps maintain a consistent thickness. 

Homemade Beef Jerky

• 1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
• 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
• 1/4 cup balsamic vinaigrette
• 1/4 cup soy sauce
• 1/4 cup minced garlic
• 1/4 cup Franks Red Hot
• 1 teaspoon onion powder
• 2 teaspoons liquid smoke flavoring
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 3 drops hot sauce (such as Dave's Insanity Sauce ®), or to taste
• 1 pound top round steak/London broil, cut into 1/4 inch strips
• 1 teaspoon ground black pepper

1. Combine the teriyaki sauce, Worcestershire sauce, balsamic vinaigrette, garlic powder, onion powder, liquid smoke, salt, and hot sauce in a re-sealable plastic bag. Add the meat strips and coat evenly with the marinade. Seal and refrigerate 24 hours.
2. Preheat an oven to 175 degrees F (80 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and place a wire rack on top.
3. Remove the beef strips from the marinade and shake off excess marinade. Discard the remaining marinade. Place the meat strips onto the wire rack and sprinkle with black pepper. Bake in the preheated oven until firm and dry, at least 3 hours. Allow the jerky to cool completely before storing in a sealed container.

I have personally found that it takes a bit longer than 3 hours...sometimes up to six. Do make sure that your meat is dry before removing it. Don't try to raise the temperature, though, to speed up the process. You are drying the meat, not cooking it.
I like to sprinkle on some garlic salt along with the black pepper, just before placing the strips into the oven. It gives it just a little extra kick at the end.

Good luck, and I'd love to hear how it works out!

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