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Preserving jerky

post #1 of 45
Thread Starter 
I have made fresh beef jerky a couple of times and want to try something different. I want to make some that dont need to be refigerated. I have a couple questions I have to ask before I get started though. Does dehydrating the meat, alone, preserve it? Do I need to add Cure #2 to the recipe to keep it from spoiling. I have ordered Rytek Kutas' book, in addition to the few I already have, but I am also open to any books, links, recipes and methods you guys are willing to recomend. Thanks
post #2 of 45
Fresh beef jerky? You mean you just put it in a dehydrator with no pre-packaged cure/spice mix? PDT_Armataz_01_23.gif

You MUST cure any meat product that is expected to be processed/stored between 40 and 140 degrees F.

I use Morton's Tenderquick. It's pretty foolproof and makes it hard to kill yourself and friends too. YES cure can kill you.

I very strongly suggest you do some reading... asking questions like you have has told me you need to know more before undertaking curing meats.
post #3 of 45
It has always been my understanding that smoke acts as a natural anti-biotic agent, and when dried to a very low moisture content it will keep for a very long time without refrigeration or other measures. Though I am hardly what you would consider an expert on the subject.

Edit: on reading Richtee's response, I guess it's a good thing I don't do jerky all that often. ;-)
post #4 of 45
To some extent. But I'd not bet my gastrointestinal tract on it.
post #5 of 45
Salted solidly I assume ;{)
post #6 of 45
BTW...you will find the appropriate references in the FIRST chapter of Rytek's book.
post #7 of 45
lol Rich u make me chuckle at times-Let the debate begin-I use to do jerky all the time in the lowest setting my oven would carry. Thats before I learned bout cure-(20 years ago)than in the dehyadrator still no cure, now I have started doing on the smoker & guess what I use cure now-was I lucky(and friends & family members)? not sure but I have learned alot since than so I gonna cure from now on.I respect everyones technique in there ways & by no means think that my way is the only way.
post #8 of 45
It's only science Des. Anyone can do what they want. I don't think we eat enough dirt, IMO. Has weakened our immune systems over generations. 1000 years ago they ate an AWFUL lot of things that would wipe out half a city today. Modern science has provided us with the tools to best defend against food poisioning. Why not use them instead of dice?
post #9 of 45
and yes RICH i,'m rereading chapter 1 and yes your right! cure it!
post #10 of 45
Quote-Unquote from Kutas' 3rd Ed.
"Often I've had people tell me that their grandparents didn't usae cures when smoking meats, since some people still think cures are not neccessary. Would a person so young really know what their grandparents were doing? Probably not."

"Or better still, back in "the good old days" how many people died of "natural causes"? An excuse a physician would give when he couldn't diagnose why the person died, no matter how old or young the person was."
post #11 of 45
Would something along the lines of a soy marinade constitute a "cure" or would you actually need to use something like Tender Quick? I've done both but now I'm getting a bit paranoid! I'd much rather be safe than sorry!
post #12 of 45
I never used to use cure in my jerky, that was until I tried it. I'll never make jerky without it now. It just makes a better product. Cure #1 that is not #2.

But I have problems with jerky getting a gray/white mold on it in the Houston humidity though. I have some poli-sorbate 80 or maybe its BHT, can't recall, that can be sprayed on jerky to stop this, but I haven't used either yet, preferring to vac seal and freeze until I need it. Besides the mold doesn't hurt or affect the flavor at all, just looks bad.
post #13 of 45
yup Rich alot died of what was called natural causes & I agree why not use it. I learn daily around this joint. thanks-and Ya Jim my last batch got a slight mold on it also-next time vac pak & fridge for me-or eat it faster?
post #14 of 45
I go with a cure payson-however i havn't used tender quick-I use prague 1 & 2 not sure how these diff from TQ.
post #15 of 45
Thanks! I've got a huge tub of honey bacon cure. Might give that a whirl. Also, I use the Hi-Mountain products a lot too. For safety sake should I just cut out soy or teriyaki marinades? I've made multiple batches using a home-made teriyaki with some added hot-sauce. Never had a problem but then again I don't want to tempt fate!!
post #16 of 45
Salt NaCl- is a curing agent. It is nowhere near as effective as nitrate cures, however. In order to cure reliably with salt alone, the product almost always must be soaked/washed to be edible. The old salt beef and pork in a barrel type stuff.

Hence, nitrate cures. MUCH less required, and more reliable. Personally, I always use nitrate cure in any meat that is to be cool/cold smoked, or aged raw as in some hams and salamis, even some types of sausage.

I use TQ because it is convienient, and pre-measured. A misplaced teaspoon of the Prage cures in a small batch can be lethal. I think the rate for Prague powders is like 1 Oz in 100! lbs. Miiighty small amounts...
post #17 of 45
Add cure to the maranade. POOF...yer fine.
post #18 of 45
Cool. I've got some Tender Quick at home. You don't by chance have a good recipe handy do you?
post #19 of 45
Des, This is for the mold on the jerky problem. I love their brisket rub too.


Potassium SorbateMOLD ON YOUR JERKY? A solution of potassium sorbate will prevent mold formation on jerky.

Use 7/8 of one ounce in a gallon of water, and spray or dip jerky with the solution after drying, or smoking.

$1.10 an ounce, so its cheap as hell too.
post #20 of 45
Just bought cure #1 from sauage makers. They say 1 teaspoon for every five pounds of meat.
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