Jerky is a type of dried meat that contains a good amount of protein. It is salted to prevent the growth of bacteria until it is dry, and it can be made from beef, pork, lamb, kangaroo, and deer. The deer jerky is famous during the hunting season. The season usually has large leftovers of deer meat, and it often gives rise to the question ‘how to make deer jerky from ground meat’ since jerky is an excellent option to preserve it.
Varieties of recipes are available, and proper attention should be given to the meat. The hind legs of a deer are more preferred as it contains a lot of muscle fiber, and it is also preferred for the quantity. The meat should be washed properly, but there should not be any excess blood or hair. After the meat is cut into pieces, mix it up with the right spices, and place it on the best food dehydrator. After the meat is adequately dried, you can preserve it for later occasions.
Ingredients for Deer Jerky
For those looking to learn how to make deer jerky at home, the key elements to make deer jerky include boneless venison meat, soya sauce, liquid smoke flavoring, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, garlic powder, and onion salt. These are the basic deer jerky seasonings, and they can be added accordingly to the need. The recipes available for deer jerky are plenty. Each recipe is different and suits the interest of various people. Some of the recipes include marinated Benson jerky, smoked venison, spicy and sweet venison, black pepper, and cidered venison.
How Long to Cure Jerky Before Dehydrating
The meat has to be preserved for a long time. Moreover, it is essential to take certain precautions to prevent spoilage. The cure is a type of salt that contains nitrates. For a long time, it has been used to preserve meat and for coloring. The use of a cure adds a red color to the meat and also alters the taste of the meat. It resists bacteria and mold growth by acting as a preservative. Besides, it is mainly used in restaurants, as they need to extend the lifetime. However, the jerky cure will not be present in the home-cooked one, as they heat the meat above 160° F. Cure is highly recommended to everyone as a preserver.
People who use this deer jerky marinade should not forget that people with blood pressure may also use it. Cure already has the presence of salt, and one should be aware of the table salt to be added. The amount of cure added should be taken into consideration, too, as it is present with nitrates. Excess amounts of cure can lead to health problems, and the meat should not be soaked in the cure for long; it is recommended to soak every kilogram for an hour.
How to Dehydrate Deer Jerky
Dehydration refers to the process of drying the meat. It increases the life of the product by taking out all the moisture. During the old times, the meat was kept on the sunlight to dry, but now the advent of technology gives us plenty of options for dehydration. The best food dehydrator of different prices and models are available in the market. One can purchase it according to their needs.
The best food dehydrator produces a large amount of heat and also constant airflow. The heat helps to dry off the moisture, thus preserving the meat from bacterial infection. The temperature of the best food dehydrator should be kept at 135° F, and the pieces should be laid in a single layer without overlapping each other. The temperature can be changed according to one’s needs. It can be set between 125° F to 160 ° F. The meat can be confirmed dry when the color changes to dark brown or black, and 8 hours of dehydration will be enough; the hours of how long to dehydrate deer jerky will vary according to the change in temperature.
How to Make Deer Jerky Without a Dehydrator
The best food dehydrator will not be available in most of the homes. People who go hunting will have a good dehydrator available with them and by making it easy to dry it. But many do not have access to the best food dehydrator and make the process difficult for them. Another option available for drying jerky is the use of an oven.
Without the best food dehydrator, the meat should be trimmed very thin. To make the slicing process easy, the meat can be kept in the freezer for thirty to sixty minutes. Then the meat should be marinated well and kept in the oven. As the pieces are thin, they will not take a lot of time to cook. This is the best option available in the absence of the best food dehydrator.
The best pellet smoker is another option. People love smoked foods, and the thought of smoked produce makes it more interesting. It is available in almost most homes, and the process is not a difficult one. It can be preferred during camping and family meet-ups.
How to Make Deer Jerky in the Oven
Making homemade deer jerky with an oven is a better option than with the best food dehydrator. An oven is a common appliance that is available in each home. The task of using the oven is much easier. The oven should have enough space to accommodate the meat. It should also have a fan to let keep the airflow. When cooking with an oven, one should be attentive to the process and make sure the meat is cooked well. It is a time-consuming method, but the product will have good taste as the heat is directly projected on it.
Deer jerky can be made in the oven with the right measure of steps. While choosing the meat, make it a thin one. Trim off the unwanted fat, as it will spoil the jerky. You could use the spices for deer meat that you prefer and keep it in the refrigerator for six to twenty-four hours. Make sure to cover the bottom rack of the oven to avoid the drippings from the jerky. The heat required is 170° F and varies according to different types of oven. The produce will be prepared within five to seven hours. In the absence of a fan, the oven door should be propped open until it is cooked. For cooking in an oven, one should have patience and interest.
How to Make Deer Jerky in a Smoker
Another method for making such products is using a smoker. Some people love smoked foods, and the process of a smoker is not a difficult one. The heat from the smoker helps significantly in the dehydration of the produce. The smoking deer jerky is full of protein, and the use of smoker will not damage the nutritious part. They also will kill the bacteria present in the product, thus acting as the best food saver. It is often preferred to use deer jerky in electric smoker due to the easy nature of preparation.
Smoking is mostly used during camping sessions as it will be easier to collect wood, and it can also be great fun for everyone. The smoked jerky will have a different flavor than products made in the oven and best food dehydrator. The smoker will have a long burning wood, and the amount of wood used determines the heat produced. The meat will have different flavors according to the wood used.
The procedure on how to make teriyaki deer jerky and other recipes starts with making a smoker jerky is the same as the one used for an oven one. The venison meat should be sliced in ¼ inches, as it will be challenging to cook with the standard thickness. The meat should be mixed up well and kept in the refrigerator for 6 to 24 hours to marinate. It can be taken out to be dried. The temperature of the charcoal smoker should be 175° F. Now, place the meat in the smoker and let it cook for four to six hours.
How to Store Deer Jerky
It should be stored properly, or else it can be spoiled easily even after going through the strenuous process. After learning how long does it take to make deer jerky, one should know that this product does not have a shelf life for more than six months. It is better to use the product within the first two months. A lot of care should also apply when storing the produce, as a lot of effort has gone into learning ‘how long to smoke deer jerky?’ and applying the same. Plastics should not be used as it can spoil the jerky due to the growth of mold. Glass jars or paper rolls are a good option for storage.
Before covering it in tight air packets, let it cool for a few hours. You can also store it in paper bags for two to three days to make sure that the moisture dries up. The produce should be dried well, and the moisture should be removed if it is present. It should be covered in tight packets without allowing any escape of air. You can add oxygen absorbers if you want, as it can increase the shelf life of the jerky. And you should also vacuum seal the packets as it will not allow any air to escape inside. You can store it in the cool and dark pantry, and it will last for one week. For the jerky to last for six months, you need to store it in the freezer, as per mykitchenadvisor.