There are, by my count, at least seven levels of fried chicken. The worst of them is good; the best, which I waited forty-four years to find, led to what can only be called an out-of-body experience. Let’s start at …
Drying has been used for hundreds of years as a means of preserving beef for extended lengths of time. It is also easier to transport over long distances, for it is lighter and easier to pack than fresh or frozen meat. Hikers and athletes commonly use dried beef as a quick and easy protein. Creating dried beef chips at home is cost-effective and a simple process. They can also be jazzed up with a multitude of spices and flavors, for the plain meat is a good medium for experimentation.
- 2 lb. beef chuck steak
- Sharp knife
- Cutting board
- Deep skillet
- 3/4 cup marinade
- Paper towels
- Airtight container
Trim off any excess fat on the edges of the meat to prevent future spoilage.
Place the beef chuck in the freezer for 20 minutes, to slightly freeze it.
Set the meat on the cutting board and slice it so it is less than 1/4-inch thick.
Mix the marinade and beef, and place it in the skillet. Set the pan on the stove at medium-high heat. Simmer the meat for five minutes.
Remove the meat and place it on the paper towels to drain the marinade off.
Arrange the strips evenly around the racks of the dehydrator, making sure none of the pieces touch.
Turn the dryer on according to manufacturer's instructions.
Dry for three hours and then check the meat to see if is dry and cracks. This means it is done. If the meat breaks, it is over-dried.
Store in an airtight container for two weeks.
- Photo Credit beef meat image by Maria Brzostowska from Fotolia.com
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