I love beef jerky. I’m not sure where and when I first tried beef jerky, but it’s one of my favourite snacks, and it’s actually fairly healthy as well because it’s full of protein and not loaded full of fat. However, some of the stuff you can buy in packets can be loaded with salt which isn’t great for you, so I thought… how hard can it be to make your own?
Turns out, not that hard at all! All you need is a bit of time and patience and you can make your own jerky which you can store in airtight jars for a good few weeks since the dehydrating process means it keeps for a lot longer than meat would generally outside of the fridge. Not that it’ll last long because you’ll be too busy eating it! My jerky was pretty spicy, but you know your own tastes, so you can adapt this recipe to suit yourself.
With this recipe, the better your cut of beef, the better your jerky will be. However, as I’m not loaded with money I didn’t want to experiment with an expensive cut of beef. So I decided to pick up some cheaper thin frying steaks you can pick up in any supermarket and flattened and tenderised them with a rolling pin until they were quite thin. The results were surprisingly good! You’ll get even better jerky if you can get beef thinly cut straight from a butcher, but one of the great things about cooking at home is you can always find a way of cooking great food that’s within your means. I would highly recommend your first attempt with this be with the cheaper steaks while you perfect your flavours.
Beef JerkyPrint Recipe
- 500g (1lb) Beef, very thinly sliced
- 5tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
- 5tbsp Soy Sauce
- 1tsp Salt
- 3tsp Black Pepper
- 2tbsp Smoked Paprika
- 1/2tsp Cayenne
- 1/2tsp Ground Cumin
- 1/2tsp Ground Coriander
- 2tsp Garlic Powder
- 2tsp Onion Powder
- 1tbsp Honey
Take a large bowl and add the soy sauce and worcestershire sauce, then add in the honey and give it a whisk till the honey is incorporated.
Next, add all of your dry ingredients and whisk this into the wet ingredients until they're nicely incorporated.
Now, take your thinly sliced beef and, one slice at a time, thoroughly coat them in the marinade to make sure each one gets covered in the marinade. If you just dump the beef into the bowl, then you won't get an even marinade.
Once each slice of beef has been coated, lay the beef slices into the marinade and cover with cling film and place into the fridge. You can leave the marinade for up to 24 hours, but I feel that anywhere from 4 to 8 hours will be plenty.
Once the beef has finished marinading, take it out of the fridge and turn the oven onto it's lowest possible setting - that would be around 90°C/190°F/Gas Mark ¼.
Lay the beef strips onto a large baking tray with a wire rack placed on it so that the air can get underneath the beef, making sure each piece is separate and that they're not laying on top of each other - and place into the oven for 3 - 4 hours and the beef feels dry and leathery.
Remove from the oven and leave to cool. Once cool, cut into pieces - this is easiest with scissors - and place into an airtight container and enjoy at your leisure!