Jerky help

Discussion in 'Beef' started by unclejoeyv, Jul 8, 2013.

  1. unclejoeyv

    unclejoeyv Fire Starter

    Hi all,

    I recently tried a 5# batch of ground beef jerky using a seasoning pack and plastic form from sausage maker.

    The taste was great but I found that after the initial drying a lot of fat had come to the surface and congealed.

    I put each tray back in the oven one at a time to liquify the fat then mopped it up with paper towels. After a couple days the fat started coming out again on its own and I was worried about safety so I tossed the rest.

    Any ideas what could be going wrong? Perhaps I didn't dry each rack enough or something. the ends of each rack of jerky was a lot more red in color and more chewy while the stuff in the middle was still more brown than red and was like tough meatloaf and not like jerky


  2. s2k9k

    s2k9k AMNPS Test Group

    Hi Joe, what was the fat content of the ground beef? I have made it with 80/20 chuck a few times and I too get a lot of fat out. I always wipe the fat off with some paper towels a couple of times during the smoke.
    Did you use cure #1?
    With the color issue it sounds like it probably wasn't dried long enough or else it wasn't mixed well enough.
  3. unclejoeyv

    unclejoeyv Fire Starter

    Hi Dave,

    It was some locally sourced beef so I don't know the fat content. A friend of mine more familiar with the food industry said that it is probably close to 80/20 but I'll never know for sure.

    My next attempt I'm going to use 80/20 from the grocery store or maybe grind my own so I know that it's very lean.

    I did use cure #1.  I believe the meat was mixed well enough so it's probably the case that the middle of each tray of jerky didn't dry enough. I was afraid to overdo it and cause the fat to render out (which happened anyway) so I didn't want to leave each tray in too long. I guess I should have left it in longer.

    I hadn't thought about blotting off the fat during drying, only at the end. I bet I would have got better results since the meat immediately under the rendered fat has a better chance of drying.
  4. doctord1955

    doctord1955 Smoking Fanatic

    I take my jerky straight from my smoker straight to the sink!  Have a home made plastic basket with holes drilled in it so I can rinse the fat off then a couple of racks on the table with at fan to dry water off!  have no problems with fat now!
  5. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Try 90/10
  6. If your going with ground beef I would recommend the least amount of fat like 95/5 or 90/10.

    Try grinding your own out of top round.  I use venison with no fat.
  7. unclejoeyv

    unclejoeyv Fire Starter

    I'll look into getting either some leaner ground beef or grinding my own. I imagine it's a whole lot easier to remove the fat from a whole cut of meat. I suppose it depends on the cut and how the price compares to the leaner ground beef. I've only seen 80/20 and 85/15 offered at the grocery store...

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