Beef Jerky Part 1

Beef jerky.  Is there really a better snack?  Portable, long-lasting, low-fat, high-protein, and oh yeah, delicious!!  I, like most of America, have been known to make that impulse purchase of bagged jerky at the gas station or grocery store, forking over upwards of $8 for a measly few ounces of smoked beef goodness.  Then it dawned on me… I could do this myself, at home, with my own smoker!  After several batches I’ve got it down to a science.  Follow along as I take you through my beef jerky recipe hopefully convincing you to give this a try; freeing yourself of those store-bought versions of one of America’s favorite foods.  Enjoy!

Ingredients

  • 2 to 3 lbs. Eye of Round
  • 1 Cup Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 Cup Molasses (I’ve Used Honey Before Too)
  • 1/4 Dark Rum (Skip this step at your own risk)
  • 1 Tablespoon Ground Ginger
  • 3 Tablespoons of your favorite BBQ Sauce (I like hickory smoked)
  • 2 Teaspoons Kosher Salt
  • 1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Smoked Paprika
  • 1 Teaspoon Ground Red Pepper
  • 1 Teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes (Skip this is you don’t like HEAT)
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce

Slicing the Meat

Trim the eye of round of any external fat that may be present.  When slicing, be sure to cut at a consistent thickness.  I like 1/4 of an inch.  If you buy your meat at a local butcher shop they will most likely slice it for you before you leave.  I buy my eye of round wholesale so I am left to sharpen my knife as much as possible and slice away.  Below is a photo of my finished slices.  I do two cuts of meat (about 2 lbs. a piece) at a time to make sure that it yields enough for the whole family.  Final note: Always slice against the grain!!  

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On to the marinade.  Take the sliced meat and place it inside a 1 gallon freezer bag.  Keep in mind the photos that I have on display here show two bags.  Each bag contains about 2 lbs. of eye of round.  The ingredients list will make enough marinade for 2 lbs. of meat.  Add all ingredients to the freezer bag.  Seal the bag tight and gently massage the marinade into the meat.  When finished, place the bag into the fridge for up to 24 hours.  I personally let the beef marinate for around 12 hours.

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All good things take time, my friends.  Be sure to check my next post where I will walk you through how to turn these marinated slices of beef into smoked meat candy.

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