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New To Smoking - Want to Make Deer Jerky

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Hi all, new member here. I've made venison jerky in the oven before but I'd like to try smoking it this time. I singed up for the eCourse and have been reading as much as I can, but have a few questions:

I have access to two types of smokers that look similar to the ones below. Is one better than the other? Easier to use? Better flavor?

Smoker A:

Smoker B:

Is the basic formula the same as in the oven? Slice, marinate, dry, just with the smoker instead of the oven? I thought I may have read that some people smoke it for a bit, then put it in the oven to finish?

Any help is appreciated... thanks...
post #2 of 6
I make venison jerky quite a bit and use many different spice mixtures. I have found that the best way for my taste is to dry the meat in a standard dehydrator for about an hour until the surface is dry, then transfer the meat to a smoker at about 110 degrees F, smoke it for an hour at 110 degrees, and then transfer it back to the standard dehydrator. This is a lot of work, but it makes incredible jerky. Note that to use these temperatures and be safe you need to use a standard jerky cure (the pink stuff) in the correct proportions. If you are not using a cure, you need to be at higher temperatures.

I have found that the lower temperatures yield a more consistent and tender texture and also give the meat a better color.

post #3 of 6
A search will yield ya lots of good jerky info on here. As to your choice of equipment, if you have enough meat, try both rigs and see what you think. As Tex said, keep your temps low. You may find you have to move your meat around on the offset, if its not modded, and rotate racks on the gourmet. I used to use my ecb for jerky, and those were the two main concerns.
post #4 of 6
My thoughts are to first use a cure along with whatever spices or marinated you prefer. Then hit it with smoke for a couple of hours at the lowest temp you can manage with your smoker. Then move it to the oven to dry. I like to turn on my oven to its lowest setting(about 160o) and when it reachs temp turn it off and then place the jerky in the oven. Check it out about every hour to see how it is drying and repeat the oven temp thing if needed.
post #5 of 6
I can't advise you on which smoker to use, I use a Bradley electric for making jerky. I set mine on 170 degrees and rotate racks. If you don't want to mess with making your own spice mix, I use High Mountain's cracked pepper and garlic mix, I really like it. And is easy to use.
post #6 of 6
I also use a Bradley but I set it at 110F and only smoke it for an hour. In my experience, most of the smoke flavor is achieved in the first 1/2 hour, but I usually go an hour. However, I first make sure the meat is dry to the touch by using a low temperature (100 degree) dehydrator before I put it in the smoker. I have found the dry meat surface to be critical to imaprting a good smoke flavor. This is important, particularly if you are usign wet seasoning.

Once the meat has been smoked for an hour, I put it back in the dehydrator and go "low and slow" until it is done. I then freeze it in vacuum-sealed mason jars (using a Tilia Foodsaver) to keep it tasting like it just came out of the smoker.
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