In fact, if you have other members in your household, its not unusual to have half your biltong missing by the time its ready . Cut the meat along the grain into strips roughly an inch thick and around 8 to 10 inches long. it needs much thinner cuts, no more than 1cm. As I did 6.4 kg of topside and at the last minute decided to not introduce any smoke on the grounds it should be kept original. Just wanted to say, THANK YOU so kindly for sharing this amazing recipe! Its worth noting that the thicker you cut your initial beef cuts, the slower the drying process must be to avoid case hardening, so try cutting thinner next time. If youre making this biltong recipe for yourself, consider making or buying a biltong box or biltong dryer where you can control the environment where the biltong is made. There is a reddit r/biltong for any questions and recipes you may have. You are right. I believe eating and cooking well attributes majorly to a happy life. Below is an in-depth explanation of everything surrounding the making of biltong. So I go for longer slower biltong which takes 2-4 days. Although heat doesnt add to the quality of the product, it can be used to increase air circulation around the meat, by means of a temperature gradient (heat rises!). The method and spice mix hasnt changed much in hundreds of years, but a few variations have appeared recently, like piri piri biltong and the use of additional ingredients like worcestershire sauce and dried chillies. I live in Denmark and have decided to build my own box. Leave some fat for extra flavour, as you like it. Interesting 7 Deg could mean thinks drying slowly Also, beneficial bacteria (penicillin) prefers is a little warmer too 85 is doable, but when you have meat in there (which is 70% water), its going to probably be a wetter environment, initially. Have tried others but always come back to this recipe by Charle. About to start my first batch, will let you know how it turns out. Always use a sharp knife. Use a non-reactive storage container when soaking the meat in vinegar. Sounds like you are on the right track! Its easy to over-salt biltong, making it almost unbearable to eat in bigger quantities (lets face it, whos going to only eat a little biltong? Thus giving us a delicious product that is safeguarded against spoilage. Cant wait ! Remove the meat from the vinegar/Worcestershire sauce mix, pat it, dry with a clean kitchen cloth, and then coat it evenly with spices. Just wondering what the downside would be to having the temp a few degrees cooler, but the humidity in the desired range? The bicarb acts as a meat tenderizer. Now let the meat marinate. I love this recipe. Make a biltong box from a cardboard box to save money. In New Zealand's humid climate a biltong maker (a box containing a light bulb and fan) is usually necessary, whereas in South Africa's dry climate the meat is commonly dried outside in the shade. Getting it right is down to trial and error. Im still on the learning curve with biltong but this recipe is giving me the best results. I Hunt, Fish, Forage, Buy, Butcher (Wannabe Norcini), Make, Savor (Im not a Saviour), and love curing and smoking meat. This is to catch the spices that fall off as the meat shrink and dries. You are using an out of date browser. Avoid spoilage and make the food more delicious. I got a bunch of knives. It should lose at least 40% - 50% moisture before it's ready. Ill be getting something like this soon, temp & humidity sensor/logger prob get most consistent in basement? Then proceed as you would with Biltong! This fat can add a considerable amount of flavor to your biltong. Use scales when weighing out ingredients. If you are hanging the meat in a room with afanit may take up to 10 days to dry. There are many curing methods used for a variety of cured foods and the method used depends on the raw product and the desired final result. The paper will allow excess moisture to continue leaving the meat, discouraging mould growth. The right amount of fat to keep on your meat for biltong is contentious, and quite honestly, it comes down to personal taste. Yes you could do that or you could grind the chilli flakes a bit and add more. Personally, I wouldnt.Portable cooler? If you dont know what you like, I suggest making a few thinner, quick drying pieces to experiment with. In a well ventilated, non-humid environment . An ultrasonic humidifier is the best way to go because you end up pumping out a fine mist and hopefully, there is some kind of filtration going on inside the humidifier. Never, ever eat any biltong that has mold growing on it! Now that you know how to make biltong, let me know how yours turns out. I never like the pre-mix because they add some flavouring too, but that's just me. There are a lot of creative, almost ceremonial devices oncutting biltong, but I think nothing beats a good, sharp knife. Pick good quality meat with a nice layer of fat and if possible fat marbling. And that is saltpeter. In the temperate environments that I've lived in, the moisture is always higher at night time and this is also useful since you can want the higher levels of humidity when you cold smoking. Biltong is a type of dried meat typically made from beef, but also from game meat such as venison, ostrich, kudu, and eland (to name a few). If yo u live in a naturally humid place, or if it has been raining a lot, you need to be extra careful - especially if it's also hot! your thoughts? Place the meat in a mixture of salt, Worcestershire sauce and balsamic vinegar making sure each part of the meat is moistened in the mix you can set the meat aside to marinade in the fridge for between half an hour to an hour. Check your biltong every day for mould. The easiest ways to achieve the high humidity and high level of temperature is to have a humidifier and a heater of some sort in the curing chamber. Salami is definitely the advanced category of using a curing chamber. Ive since upgraded to an old fridge with the mechanics removed, holes in the bottom, and a fan drawing air past the meat. Your email address will not be published. Once youve made the biltong spice mix, rub it onto both sides of the meat. Back in the days when refrigerators werent a thing, the pioneers needed a way to preserve their meat. I was able to share it with my friends and everyone really loved it. There are two essential things to note here. Biltong traditionally did not include sugar at all and the preservation is mainly achieved by the addition of vinegar. Never come across biltong done with balsamic vinegar before. As a perfect example of this, the Italians make a beautiful beef product called Bresaola, which is very slowly air dried at cold temperatures, so as to achieve an even dryness and texture. This comes down to personal preference. Biltong is air cured, not cooked, not dehydrated. The air fryer will give a harder dryer piece of meat in 4 to 6 hours. Use a sharp knife or biltong slicer to slice it. Just add a teaspoon of bicarb to the biltong spice for every 1 kg of meat. Sprinkle the salt all over the meat including the sides. Most South Africans have a biltong slicer, which makes the job easier. If you found this post helpful or have learned something, comment, subscribe, and follow me on social platforms for more tasty recipes. Not sure it would move the needle much over here though. It basically just follows the procedure but since it is common to have a fermentation stage having that higher temperature and higher humidity allows that pH and acidity to increase to create a hostile environment for bad bacteria. If there is any give in the meat, theres still moisture in the middle. Thanks for your time. It all depends on the type of dryer and thickness of the meat as to how soon your meat is ready. These commercial quick dry solutions wont taste the same. To easily make a biltong box at home, use a cardboard box, such as a computer monitor box. It is advisable to put a tray down before hanging up the meat because they will tend to drip a bit before they get dry. Also, remove any gristle or sinew which once it is dried is pretty much inedible and you dont want that ruining your biltong snack. Travel writing, recipe development as well as writing about homesteading matters, camping, health, children, medical matters, press releases and copywriting keep me busy. Traditional biltong is made by slicing large strips of beef and coating them with a mixture of crushed coriander seeds, cracked pepper, salt, and brown sugar. This is the ultimate way of making the famous South African cured meat, often confused with beef jerky. If youre interested in a simple guide and recipe, please check out the page I wrote on jerky & biltong here. To this day it's enjoyed in excessive quantities as it's such an addictive snack. ), A Biltong recipe that produces consistent results with an authentic, traditional spice mix. Although with airflow, the biltong dries in higher humidity than this. Do this in a clean plastic or non-reactive metal container where the meat fits snugly. Think it should be fine with a fan to keep the air moving? Bicarb has a pretty unpleasant taste, so its important to keep the quantity low. It is eaten in great quantities here, but its popularity is only now starting to spread around the world. Many DIY biltong makers will use a biltong box with a fan and a lightbulb in to create good air circulation. Like a lot of biltong lovers, I was introduced to this culinary treasure as a child, and the addiction has stuck. I'm used to seeing brown sugar instead of honey in most recipes, but its a good change and something I will use going forward. But I havent tried it and I cant say Ive heard any great outcomes if youre looking at longer-term dry curing for months. Biltong is a dry beef product that is manufactured without a heat lethality step, raising concerns of whether effective microbial pathogen reduction can occur during biltong processing. Unfortunately its pretty hot in France and the actual temperature of the cellar is 17-18C/62,6-64,4F. You need to find the balance between quality and cost because in the drying process, youre going to lose some of the weight, and then per pound biltong can work out quite expensive but it is so worth it! Perfect for game days, high protein diets and anyone that enjoys great food. I have compiled a recipe book as we speak, which will be available soon, it will include what I have learned around meat curing across many different countries as well. Thank you! The aim of curing food is to accomplish two things. It was also typically made in the winter months when the colder temperatures would reduce the risk of mold. Mould sometimes happen if the airflow is not good enough and the humidity is high. If youre impatient and cant wait for your biltong to dry, plan ahead and cut some thinner pieces to hang with the restthese will keep you going while you wait for the thicker stuff to be ready. Will that work ok? Can i exclude the sugar from the the recipe or replace with a sugar alternative? But have never seen anyone in south africa use this. Oui, vive la France ! There is a recipe for making biltong spice below here. As soon as you spot mould wipe it off with vinegar making sure to get all of it. After your biltong has dried to your preferred consistency, you can continue to store it hanging in a well aerated space indefinitely. But yes I would say oxidation, smell it and try using your senses, does it have any off smell (our evolutionary noses are quite useful), Fresh frozen meat that is thawed and then cured, I personally have had no problems with as long as it was fresh (so you have to get your source to acknowledge this), I know recipes dont have (pink) curing salt, but I prefer to use it, not just for color but also the other obvious safety reasons. Your house seems like the place to be) Thanks! When you have mastered the art of making biltong you will have plenty of friends flocking around to enjoy big games with a couple of drinks and the platter of biltong being passed around. I made my first biltong by hanging it from a piece of wood jammed into a window frame beside a cool window, with a fan on low to circulate air. Another really easy way to make biltong sticks (thinner, dry pieces) is to put oven on lowest temp (170 F in USA) and leave the door open a crack to let warm air escape. My answer? This should go some way towards fixing the problem. Both are cured meats but with a difference in the method, texture and flavour. The point of using vinegar is to neutralize any bacteria that may affect the meat. Hanging and curing naturally in 10-14 days is best, this is why the snack is typically made in the winter where the air is cool and the humidity low. Anything too extreme will create an extreme result. Its perfectly fine and very common to dry out jerky which has been in a dehydrator. Put a small meat hook or paperclip through the meat with a label attached to it. If youve ever tried cutting over-dried biltong, youll know how tough it can betough as old boots! There are air-drying nets available, so if you dont have an electric dryer you may simply want to hang the meat up with a fan directed toward the meat. Toast the coriander seeds in a dry pan, then grind down in a pestle and mortar or spice grinder. Four hours should be enough; however, I often leave the tray in the refrigerator overnight. Step #2: cut the holes for the fan and the dehumidifier. Just follow these simple instructions: Slice the meat into suitable strips and sprinkle with Biltong spice or marinate it in a brine of your choice. Tanja, I live in Colorado (low humidity) and just hang my biltong in the garage with a fan blowing it. Biltong spice is a mixture of toasted, crushed coriander seed, cracked black pepper, flaked or coarse salt, and brown sugar.