Serious Eats: Recipes

Cook the Book: Beef Jerky

One of the first things that I noticed when embarking on my sustainable meat adventure courtesy of Deborah Krasner's Good Meat was that shopping for the good stuff was a whole new ball game. Small butchers that carry sustainably raised meat generally have a selection much more limited than that of a supermarket or even a conventional butcher. It's best to step into the butcher with an open mind and not a set shopping list.

This recipe for Beef Jerky wasn't exactly what I had in mind when I did my shopping for the week, but seeing the thin slices of grass-fed top round laid out behind glass I knew it was meant to be. The recipe is adapted from Homesick Texan, a blog that celebrates the foods of Texas in New York. The meat is partially frozen for ease of slicing and then marinated in a mix of Worcestershire, garlic, and chiles overnight for maximum jerky flavor. The strips are then laid out on a baking sheet and dried in the oven for a few hours to reach that perfect chewy-snappy texture. Krasner warns that the jerky can easily over-dry so keeping an eye on the jerky is a must. Once dried, the jerky is incredible, a high-brow-low-brow snack that has nothing at all to do with those gas station Slim [Jims. Although they are just as satisfyingly addictive, this is beef jerky that you can feel good about eating.

As always with our Cook the Book feature, we have five (5) copies of Good Meat to give away this week.

Adapted from Good Meat by Deborah Krasner. Copyright © 2010. Published by Stewart, Tabori & Chang. Available wherever books are sold. All Rights Reserved.

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