Preserving jerky

Discussion in 'Making Jerky' started by hell fire grill, Mar 5, 2008.

  1. 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
     
  2. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Fresh beef jerky? You mean you just put it in a dehydrator with no pre-packaged cure/spice mix? [​IMG]

    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.
     
  3. pitrow

    pitrow Smoking Fanatic

    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. ;-)
     
  4. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    To some extent. But I'd not bet my gastrointestinal tract on it.
     
  5. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Salted solidly I assume ;{)
     
  6. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    BTW...you will find the appropriate references in the FIRST chapter of Rytek's book.
     
  7. desertlites

    desertlites Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    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.
     
  8. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    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?
     
  9. desertlites

    desertlites Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    and yes RICH i,'m rereading chapter 1 and yes your right! cure it!
     
  10. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    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."
     
  11. payson

    payson Meat Mopper

    Richtee,
    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!
     
  12. navionjim

    navionjim Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    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.
     
  13. desertlites

    desertlites Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    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?
     
  14. desertlites

    desertlites Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    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.
     
  15. payson

    payson Meat Mopper

    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!!
     
  16. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    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...
     
  17. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Add cure to the maranade. POOF...yer fine.
     
  18. payson

    payson Meat Mopper

    Cool. I've got some Tender Quick at home. You don't by chance have a good recipe handy do you?
     
  19. navionjim

    navionjim Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Des, This is for the mold on the jerky problem. I love their brisket rub too.

    http://www.zachspice.com/shop.php?Ca...ucts&cat_id=24

    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.
    Jimbo
     
  20. blacklab

    blacklab Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Just bought cure #1 from sauage makers. They say 1 teaspoon for every five pounds of meat.
     

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