Jerky is one of my favourite things not only to make but also to eat, and it is so expensive to buy. This recipe will save you a ton of cash, not only is it so much cheaper to make, but in tastes way better than any I have ever brought before. Dehydrated jerky misses the smoke that I think makes this recipe stand out.
To me, jerky is something that you should customise to your liking. At my house, that means pulling it off the smoker it is still a little chewy. This means it may not store as long, but to be honest, it tastes so good, it doesn't last anyway. For you this could mean trying out different ingredients-maybe adding in chilli flakes or including some fresh cut chillies in the marinade or more pepper
What you need
1 x 375ml can root beer like Dr Pepper or sarsaparilla
1 cup of dark soy sauce
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
3 Tablespoons brown sugar
4 tablespoons of your favourite Smokey joes rub I like a mix of 3 parts outback and 1 part Smokey hot – be adventurous and mix it up
1kg or 2 pounds of beef or Kangaroo (skirt steak or eye of round are my favourites)
What to do
I like to start by placing my meat into the freezer for about an hour or so. This allows for the meat to get firm, without freezing, making it so much easier to cut into strips.
Cut the jerky into strips. Generally, I make mine about an inch wide and about 1/8 inch or 1/2 cm thick. I personally like them to be long, but do whatever works for you and your smoker.
Mix all your remaining ingredients together and let it marinade at least overnight in the fridge.
Set up your smoker and preheat to about 200 F. (95c) Choose your favourite wood for smoking (I like something with a bit of flavour like hickory)
Place the strips so that they aren't overlapping. I personally like to hang them over the grates of my grill, so that I can fill the smoker with the strips but do whatever works for you and your barbecue. Smoke until it meets your desired texture (dryness). For me this usually takes 3-4 hours, but it depends mostly on how thick you cut your jerky and how dry you like the jerky.
i also like to sprinkle extra chilli flakes or pepper just prior to going in the smoker
Depending on how dry you make the jerky, will depend on how long it lasts outside of the fridge. If you want it to last a little longer, consider smoking as described above and then finishing off in a dehydrator or on super low heat until it is fully dry.