Before refrigeration, drying beef was the preferred method for preserving the meat for future use. Today beef jerky, a type of seasoned dried beef, is still very popular. In days gone by, dried beef was made on screens in the sun, but today it can be dried in the oven or a dehydrator.
Things You'll Need
- Beef roast
- Baking pan with rack
Slice the roast into strips approximately 1/4” thick, or have your butcher do this for you.
Lay each strip in a single layer on the rack that fits a shallow roasting pan.
Turn the oven on at the lowest possible setting. On most electric stoves, this will be approximately 170 degrees. For a gas stove, the heat from the pilot light will probably generate enough heat.
Place the baking pan in the oven for 12 hours or overnight.
Remove from the oven and quickly turn each slice of meat over. Return to the oven for another 6 to 12 hours or until the meat is dry but not crisp. The dried beef should bend, but not break without effort.
Tips & Warnings
- Dried beef strips can also be made in a dehydrator. Follow the recipe booklet that came with your machine or plan on approximately 18 hours of drying time.
- Marinate the beef strips in soy sauce and crushed black pepper or other spices approximately 2 hours before drying for a delicious beef jerky.
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