After making dried pineapple, the next thing I wanted to do with my new dehydrator was to make beef jerky. I remember making beef jerky as a kid with our infomercial food dehydrator. It took several days to dry, but was delicious.
|Top round sliced and ready for jerky|
I bought 3 pounds of top round for $5 a pound. The butcher sliced the meat for me into thin strips (no charge). I marinated the meat using the jerky spice mix that came with my dehydrator plus some Worcestershire sauce and temari (fancy soy sauce), but I skipped the jerky cure packets (containing salt and sodium nitrite). We never used a cure when I was a kid and it doesn't sound like an absolutely necessary step. I suppose if you were making ground meat jerky (with more germs and critters in the meat) and were intending to store the finished product unrefrigerated I might want to use a cure. We always refrigerated our jerky, so spoilage wasn't much of an issue.
|Marinating jerky meat|
|Raw marinated beef in the dehydrator|