Dry Cure Jerky Recipes
The following dry cure jerky recipes will be added shortly. Thanks for your patience. Eldon R. Cutlip
Dry Cure Jerky
If you have always wanted to make your own jerky, but worried that it was complicated and time consuming, there’s no need to stress any longer. The truth is that making your own jerky is a simple task similar to seasoning regular cuts of meat. Moreover, it can be done in the comfort of your own kitchen for a fraction of what it costs to buy it at the local convenient store.
Traditional salt curing has been done the same way since the 13th century. It was a difficult task at best, because the salt and nitrates had to be forced into the various meats by hand. The effects of the salt and nitrate were twofold; they intensified the flavor and appeal of the meat and served as an antimicrobial agent to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.
Hogs were slaughtered in the fall of the year, the resulting pork bellies an fresh hams were rubbed down and packed tightly into non-resistant curing tubs and left up to six weeks at a time. The curing properties of the salt was used to draw the moisture (blood) out of the meat. This bloody liquid and subsequent meat particles were dispersed through the drain holes in the bottom of the curing tub. After curing, the bacons and hams were smoked and/or air dried––no cooking was involved.
The dry cure procedure is basically the same for jerky, except the meat is only a quarter of an inch thick. Start by trimming away all visible fat and connecting tissue from the selected meat, then slice it into 1/4” (0.64 cm) thick by 2-3” (5-8 cm) wide strips. Cut the meat “across” the grain for a tender bite or “with” the grain for a tougher bite.
Transfer the dry rub mixture into a shaker and sprinkle it evenly on both sides of the meat strips. At this point, some jerky makers use a rolling pin to press the dry rub deeper into the meat. Layer the seasoned meat strips into a glass or stoneware container, cover, and refrigerate up to 24 hours. Next day, dry the cured meat strips in an oven, smoker or dehydrator. Your objective is to maintain a constant temperature of 145°F (63°C) until the jerky is done. Properly dried jerky will crack or snap when bent.