Making Beef Jerky. 3 January 2013 Beef Jerky
It was decided to make beef jerky from about 1.9 pounds of flank steak. The steak was cut into strips longitudinally or with the grain. The product was then marinated with a home mixture of soy sauce,HP sauce,black pepper, sea salt, and some hot pepper flakes. The strips were then pressured cooked for about ten minutes at 15 PSI, to reach a temperature of at least 165F. The strips were then placed on teflon sheets and placed in the Excalibur dehydrator (135F) until reasonable dry, then placed on the open mesh to facilitate through drying. This process takes about ten hours. This is subjective to a large degree. Storage is at room temperature in vacuum packs. It remains edible if no mold forms over time.

Why is temperature important when making jerky? Illnesses due to Salmonella and E. coli O157:H7 from home made jerky raise questions about the safety of traditional drying methods for making beef and venison jerky. The USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline’s current recommendation for making jerky safely is to heat meat to 160 °F and poultry to 165 °F before the dehydrating process. This step assures that any bacteria present will be destroyed by wet heat. But most dehydrator instructions do not include this step, and a dehydrator may not reach temperatures high enough to heat meat to 160 °F or 165 °F.After heating to 160 °F or 165 °F, maintaining a constant dehydrator temperature of 130 to 140 °F during the drying process is important because:the process must be fast enough to dry food before it spoils; and it must remove enough water that micro-organisms are unable to grow. United States Department of Agriculture

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