Beef jerky - one of the frequently requested items in missionary care packages. A craving that makes us experiment on the field. Some internet research and a few attempts in the kitchen later and we have a recipe that now is our favorite, even more loved than the packaged jerky in the States.
Step one - Choose a lean cut of beef.
Step two - Cut it cross-grain in order to make it easier to chew once it is dried.
Step three - Prepare marinade.
Marinade instructions per one pound of beef
4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. chili powder (less depending on desired flavor)
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. liquid smoke
1/2 cup water
Mix marinade ingredients together. Pour marinade into a container and place slices of meat in marinade. Allow to marinade in fridge for 24 hours.
Once you are ready to dry the beef slices, preheat the oven to 150 degrees Fahrenheit (60 degrees Celsius) for a Convection oven. We pat off each slice with a paper towel to prevent the jerky from being too salty or spicy once it is dried. Place the slices of beef about an inch apart on an oven rack as pictured below. Be sure to place a drip rack underneath as the marinade will drip off while the meat is drying. Allow the meat to dry for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
Note: Whether or not you pat the marinade off the meat before drying or how long you allow the meat to dry is all up to you. You can try this recipe and decide more or less on the ingredients and time allowed to marinade and dry per your desired flavor and texture.
Once the meat is dried, we store it in an air-tight Ziploc bag or container. It usually doesn't stay there very long!