Lean meat where all the fat has been trimmed and then cut into strips which are dried with an aim of preventing it from spoiling is referred to as beef jerky. Salt has to be added to the lean meat when making beef jerky so as to prevent the growth of microorganisms such as bacteria on the meat that can make it go bad. Drying the meat after salt has been dried is done under low temperature and the method takes time. Another modern method that is used in making beef jerky other than the known common method involves marinating the beef slices where they are soaked in a seasoned liquid or a spice rub. Low temperature heat is used for drying or smoking so as to remove water from the marinated beef slices. The final product that is achieved is usually ready to eat without need of any further preparation and it usually has a salty taste. Storage of the beef jerky for a long period may require use of chemical preservatives but it is not a must since the beef jerky has very low moisture content which does not encourage the growth of microorganisms which make it spoil.
Gourmet beef jerky is seasoned with marinade of high-quality ingredients which usually have a special presentation and are of high sophistication in some delicious blend of savory spices and also follow unique recipes. When preparing gourmet beef jerky, all the fat is removed prior to drying as the fat does not dry which can provide breeding grounds for microorganisms. Drying of the meat should be done as soon as possible to limit spoilage and low temperatures are used so that the meat does not cook and also to avoid over drying which makes it become brittle. Drying ovens having low temperatures can be used for drying where the fast-moving air in the oven together with low heat increases the drying rate to just a few hours to the desired moisture content. Salted gourmet beef jerky slices usually dry faster as compared to those that have been seasoned with marinade since the marinade adds more moisture to the beef slices.
Packaging of gourmet beef jerky is done in plastic bags that can be flushed with nitrogen gas or else the packs can be vacuumed to remove oxygen after they are completely dry to the required moisture and cooled. Preventing oxidation of fat in the gourmet beef jerky packets can be done by packing oxygen absorbers with them. The nutrition content of gourmet beef jerky is usually made up of high protein with minimum carbohydrate content due to the low fat and moisture content available. Gourmet beef jerky neither have gluten nor nitrites as natural preservatives are used in the preservation. Sweet recipe where sugar is the major ingredient is used giving the gourmet beef jerky some sticky and sweet goodness.
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