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Recipe: Smoke House Style Beef Jerky

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    Recipe: Smoke House Style Beef Jerky

    After experimenting for the past year with making beef jerky, this is the recipe that my family likes the best. It reminds me a lot of the stuff we used to get when I was a kid. The butcher that took care of our cows when it was time, also made jerky in the smoke house he had in back of the butcher shop. I loved that jerky.

    A few tips and tricks
    • Meat - You want something very lean. I use round roast (top, bottom, eye are all good), but you could use flank steak, skirt steak, sirloin tip as well.
    • Trimming - get all the intermuscular fat and silver skin trimmed off. If there are any seams with fat in them in the cut, you want those out, too.
    • Slicing - Nice and thin, across the grain. I use my slicer and get as close to 1/8” as I can. Go across the grain unless you like your jerky really chewy, in which case you can slice with the grain. But it will be CHEWY.
    • To smoke or not - I don’t smoke and I do use liquid smoke (I know, I know). But it tastes good. You can also smoke at 175F (no hotter or you will cook, not dehydrate). If you’re going to smoke the jerky, omit the liquid smoke.
    • Storage - your jerky will last up to 4 weeks in the refrigerator. I just stick it in gallon ziplock bags, squeeze the air out, and put it in the fridge. I imagine you could freeze and save for later, but I’ve never actually had a bag worth of jerky that lasted more than 4-5 days, max.
    • I am giving the recipe for 1 lb of beef. Scale accordingly :-)
    • Dehydrating - You can use an oven set to 175F, a smoker set up to run at 175F, or a dehydrator. I have this dehydrator, it works well.

    Ingredients
    • 1 lb lean beef - Round, Flank, Skirt, Sirloin Tip all work well
    • 1 1/2 tsp sea salt (not iodized)
    • 1 1/2 tsp fine ground black pepper
    • 1 1/2 tsp brown sugar
    • 1/2 tsp onion powder
    • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
    • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
    • 1/2 cup beef broth
    • 1/4 cup water
    • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
    • 1/4 tsp Prague Powder #1
    • 1/2 tsp liquid smoke (I use Wright’s Hickory) (omit this if you are going to smoke the jerky)
    Method
    1. Trim the meat well. We do not want any silver skin or intermuscular fat at all. Nor any seams between muscles in the cut of meat
    2. Slice the meat, across the grain, as close to 1/8” slices as possible.
    3. Mix all of the brine ingredients together in a medium size mixing bowl.
    4. Put the meat in the bowl and mix together well by hand. You want every slice well coated with brine.
    5. Put the meat in a gallon ziplock bag, pour the brine liquid in, squeeze all the air out and seal.
    6. Put in the fridge for a minimum of 1 hour. I prefer overnight to give the meat more opportunity to absorb the various brine components to the greatest extent possible.
    7. When ready, with about 6 hours of time to spare, set up your dehydrator, oven, or smoker to dehydrate the meat. An oven at 175F works well (although gas ovens will not dehydrate well. The gas introduces a lot of moisture as it burns). A smoker kept around 175F will also work well. Or just spend the few bucks and get the dehydrator already.
    8. Lay out all of the meat flat in the dehydrator. Don’t overlap the meat. No need to rinse it very much, just pull out of the brine, pat dry with paper towels and then into the oven/dehydrator/smoker.
    9. The meat will need 5-6 hours to become jerky. Longer if the slices are thicker.
    10. Beef jerky is done a piece of the jerky bends in half, cracks on the bend line, but doesn’t break. It will feel like jerky, as well. Until it is done, it will feel a bit spongy to the touch, not that dry, rough feel of jerky.
    11. That’s it!
    4 lbs of top round sliced
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    A nice, thin slice
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    Brine ingredients, minus the broth
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    On dehydrator, ready to go ….. 6 hours to wait
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    Coming along nicely
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    This is what they look like when they are done
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    That might last 5 days if I’m lucky
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    Last edited by ecowper; September 25, 2021, 04:01 PM.

    #2
    Looks great. inspiring me to do another batch of jerky. Thanks for sharing.

    Comment


    • ecowper
      ecowper commented
      Editing a comment
      I like the savory add of the beef broth and Worcestershire sauce. Makes it much more "beefy", more satisfying.

    • Bogy
      Bogy commented
      Editing a comment
      I've usually used Worcestershire sauce, but I don't remember ever using beef broth. Going to have to try it.

    #3
    Looks good. I use my gas oven all the time to make jerky. I leave the door cracked a little and have no problems with combustion or evaporative moisture.

    I have a dehydrator but it seems to have a narrow window between not dry enough and too dry and brittle with a slight burnt taste.
    Last edited by 58limited; September 25, 2021, 10:59 AM.

    Comment


    • 58limited
      58limited commented
      Editing a comment
      Is this a safety feature? My gas oven is a 1950 O'Keefe & Merritt. The pilot is always on and keeps the oven warm enough to proof bread. When the oven is set to "warm" it keeps a low flame that would actually be too hot for jerky if the door is closed. I slide an oven rack out an inch or so to keep the door propped open.

    • ecowper
      ecowper commented
      Editing a comment
      It’s modern day safety feature. But my oven has a proof setting for the warming drawer. And I can set my oven to 175F and it holds that fine. But my oven gets humid with door closed.

    • Bogy
      Bogy commented
      Editing a comment
      Partly safety, partly fuel savings. Instead of having a pilot light constantly burning modern stoves use electric ignition. Also means you never have a pilot light that blows out.
      Last edited by Bogy; September 25, 2021, 01:45 PM.

    #4
    Looks great! Thanks!

    Comment


      #5
      Now I’m excited for deer season

      Comment


        #6
        Thanks! Rather than liquid smoke, I was thinking of trying to rig my dehydrator with my PolyScience Smoke Injector. I’ll let ya’ll know if that works out. If anyone has already destroyed an electric dehydrator trying this, please stop me. 🤣
        Click image for larger version

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        Comment


        • ecowper
          ecowper commented
          Editing a comment
          fun experiment! Idea though. What if you smoked the meat under a bowl first, then put in the cure, and then dehydrator?

        • rickgregory
          rickgregory commented
          Editing a comment
          How will that work though? The dehydrator has to be open the air to expel the moisture, so wouldn't it expel the smoke too?

        • Johnny Booth
          Johnny Booth commented
          Editing a comment
          Hmmmm.... maybe setup the dehydrator to pull the smoke in. Been looking for a use for this, other than smoking my whiskey glass.😎

        #7
        I am going to make this jerky. Putting on the smoker for 3 hours and transfer to our dehydrator. Our dehydrator is 40 years old and and still works great, it’s the size of the microwaves that came out in the 1970’s
        Some of you might have had the Excalibur dehydrator from back then. I’ll make sure the dehydrator has been running for an hour before transferring the meat over.

        Comment


          #8
          Looks great! Question: Since it’s such a short brine time, why the Prague powder? Preservative?

          Comment


          • ecowper
            ecowper commented
            Editing a comment
            it only needs an hour if you slice the jerky nice and thin. The PP#1 is a preservative AND it also gives you some traditional flavor.

          #9
          Looks great, Eric. Thanks.

          Comment


          • ecowper
            ecowper commented
            Editing a comment
            you know me, I like to share! you're welcome

          #10
          ecowper
          I found the PP#1 on Amazon and going to order a small bottle 1.5 pound. Hopefully it has a long shelf life cause this would be in the house probably 10 years.

          Comment


            #11
            Ghawtho I’ve had a pound in my pantry for about 6 years now, has been just fine. Pretty close to needing more finally!

            Comment


              #12
              ecowper
              The PP#1 that we ordered from Amazon will be delivered Friday or Saturday. Can the recipe be reduced in sodium some without effecting it too much? I have high blood pressure and need to watch sodium close, maybe the recipe (jerky) isn’t that salty. Something I’ve noticed with commercial made beef jerky is it’s sliced with the grain. I watched Alton Browns Good Eats yesterday and Alton was slicing his beef with the grain. Alton claimed slicing beef against the grain for jerky it separates apart too easily.

              Comment


              • Bogy
                Bogy commented
                Editing a comment
                ecowper in his directions said not to bother with doing a lot of rinsing. Just to pat the pieces with paper towels. I would suggest you either pat really good with paper towels, or do at least some rinsing. You want some salt to be absorbed, but it seems that when I have had jerky that was too salty its when I've left to much on the surface, not that too much was absorbed.

              • ecowper
                ecowper commented
                Editing a comment
                You can cut the salt in half without noticeable flavor issues in my experience.

              #13
              I’ll probably just use the recipe as is and just limit my eating jerky to only one slice per day and no more than that. That’s what I do with
              store bought beef jerky. I have a one pound
              bag that am slowly been eating on for the
              last two months. I’ve got to be very careful
              with sodium, too much sodium and my
              hands and fingers swell up (balloon up) like
              blown up latex gloves. Some people have severe reactions with too much sodium and am one of the unlucky ones.
              Last edited by Ghawtho; September 29, 2022, 01:56 PM.

              Comment


                #14
                ecowper
                Got 1.5# of round marinating following the marinade for 1 pound. Slicing wasn’t the best,
                I have a few slices 5 to 7 that are 1/4” thick. I’m leaving in the fridge until Saturday morning and rotating the marinade bag about every two hours throughout the day. The thicker slices might need to stay in the dehydrator 8 hours.
                Attached Files

                Comment


                • ecowper
                  ecowper commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Yep, I'm not the best at getting super thin slices either. I just leave 'em the dehydrator longer.

                #15
                ecowper
                I tasted the marinade and it’s not overly salty at all. You did a good job putting that together.
                Someone might think it’s too much sodium
                but it has a good balance so it’s going to be just fine. I’m smoking it on thin blue smoke using
                Texas Post Oak tomorrow morning for 2 1/2 to 3 hours or just until it starts getting mahogany brown color then placing in our dehydrator and leave it alone for at least 4 hours. We will have some company at the house in the afternoon and going to see their reactions. I bet the fragrance in the house is wonderful. Nothing makes a house smell better than brownies and
                jerky,,,, we’ll basically cooking.

                Comment

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