My first try at curing meat – A blast from the past

Last autumn, something motivated me to try preserving meat for the first time. I didn’t want to try to make beef jerky yet (though I do love it). I just wanted to experiment to find an extremely simple way to dry out meat at home without smoking it over a fire (which I will try soon).

So I bought some beef cubes from the supermarket, sliced them thin (about 5 mm/0.2″ thick) and packed them in layers of sea salt. After a day or two in the refrigerator, I took them out and stuck them on a thin metal rod. After about a week, the pieces were completely dry and hard. Shortly after this, I brought some pieces along on a camping trip, soaked them in water for about 1.5 hours (should have been much longer, like 4 or 5 hours) and then fried them in oil. It tasted like beef bacon!

Soaking in water:

Frying in oil:

Several months later, the meat looks/feels exactly the way it did when I dried it, so I think it should stay well preserved for a long time. It seems that this method definitely has some potential. The next time I cook with this meat, I will soak it for several hours to remove more salt and allow it to absorb more water and then I will make a stew with it using potatoes, onions, carrots etc. as well.

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4 comments on “My first try at curing meat – A blast from the past

  1. Ron says:

    Thanks for the info.
    Definitly something to give a try myself someday.
    Looking forward to your smokingexperiences! If you want I can send you a complete drawing for a smokehouse.

    • You should try it. It’s really easy!

      When I try smoking meat, it’ll probably be a very simple setup inside my lavvu shelter. If I decide to do it regularly and in a more convenient way, I’ll ask you for those smokehouse drawings. 🙂

  2. Chris says:

    Great ppst, as usual. My Grandpa always talked about his mother soaking salt pork in milk to get the salt out before it was cooked. I wonder if powdered milk would work well on the trail?

    • Thanks for the kind words! I really appreciate it.

      I haven’t heard of the milk trick, but I’d certainly be up for trying it. I’ll do some research to see if powdered milk would work as well. Powdered milk would be a good thing to have in any case!

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