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Beef Jerky

A few days ago I took out our last 2 steaks from last year’s beef.  I thought we could grill one on Sat. and one on Sun. to use them up.  Well, we ended up not needing much dinner on Sun. because there was so much food at Justin’s class open house.  So I had thawed steak in the fridge…with no plans for it.  I decided to try making beef jerky last night.  It’s been on my to-do list for at least a year now.  And it was fresh in my mind since I just ordered some from our co-op, and my SIL just made some too.  The cut I used was a sizzler (I think this is a really good cut to use for jerky…not much fat, no bones).  The recipe I used is from the user guide for my dehydrator.  So easy…and SO GOOD!!!!  I’ve always loved beef jerky.  And this is one of the best I’ve tasted.  I’ll be making more for sure!  I didn’t realize it was so easy to make.  And I was surprised by how quickly it cooked.  I have just a basic dehydrator, and it was done in less than 10 hours.  I did cut my beef very thin.  I think that helped.  So glad to have this tasty snack on hand.  But I’m guessing it won’t last long.  I only used a pound of meat.  You can use the same recipe for any kind of meat…chicken, turkey, even ground meat.  I did n’t actually measure my ingrdients.  I just added what looked good.  Just make it to your liking.

Beef Jerky
(recipe for 4 lbs. of meat)

3 cups soy sauce
1/2 lb. brown sugar
spices of your choosing (I didn’t add any.  Maybe I’ll experiment with that in future batches.)
1/4 cup liquid smoke (optional…I added it…really adds a great flavor)

Mix ingredients in a bowl and let stand while you cut the meat.  Trim off all fat.  Slice meat 1/8 – 1/4″ thick.  Increase marinating time if meat is thicker.  Marinate meat in mixture for about 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes.  Drain.  Place on dehyrdrator trays to dry.  Drying time can be anywhere from 8 hours to 2 days, depending on your dehydrator and the thickness of the meat.  Store in clean jars with tight lids or plastic storage bags.

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