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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well I searched around on the internet and I mostly found alot of stuff about smoking , and stuff about brines. I am very new to all this survivalist stuff so I was looking for a dumbed down version. From what I gather it Takes Salt, potassium Nitrate, and Sugar. I could be very wrong on those ingredients though. Can anyone break it down to me dummy style? Thanks for the help!
 

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Jerky is the easiest.

Last week my youngest and I sliced meat thinly, and soaked the meat for an hour in soy sauce and honey and pepper, then we put it in a dehydrator. It is really very good. In the days before dehydrators they would have hung meat in a smoky fire to keep the flies off, and that would have made it taste better as well. Jerky with a smoky flavor is excellent!

I have also salted pork, but I did it in the fridge as I was worried about spoilage. I made it with a book in one hand. I believe a cure of 50% honey and 50% salt is best.

After it had brined a couple of days, I rinsed it and I put it in an outdoor grill with a lid. I started a fire in a smallish aluminum bowl, dumped soaked wood chips on top, and I closed the lid. I did this twice. Then I cooked the meat and served it.

It was delicious.

Some thoughts: I sliced the meat before I rubbed it with salt and honey: if it had been in one piece it would have taked longer to brine and to smoke. Lean meat tastes more like ham and fat meat tastes more like bacon.

Lastly, those big old hams that our ancestors made can still be bought in stores: they are called Virginia Hams and they are covered with cloth. They store well at room temperature. And, they are both very salty and very hard!

I have bought the Virginia Hams a couple of times: they have to be soaked before they are eaten. The taste is excellent. And, I lack the skill to dry something that hard without it spoiling.

Since I have some old books on the subject I could probably do it once the weather turns cold, and *IF* I had a smokehouse that I could hold at the proper temperature. Traditionally smoking was done in the fall, and the meat was kept cold but not allowed to frost while it smoked. The cloth covering of the virginia ham was to keep bugs off. And, those hams were checked as they dried to look for signs of spoiling, as the weather could take a sudden warm turn before the meat was fully salted or a mistake might have been made in the processing.

The nitrates that are added now are to make the meat keep longer. Modern tastes want less salt and more moisture, and that makes it harder to keep meat fresh and so they add nitrates for the sake of security.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
How long do you think jerky would last that was cooked in that manner? I of course like everyone else here, am planning for worst case scenario. I am trying to find a way to preserve meat without power.
 

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Understanding what you want to achieve is key. Salt curing bacon and ham is pretty easy. I also do with venison and fish. Curring for unrefrigerated storage is tricky! Your curing ingredients are correct, but it defiantly is not something you want to learn based on trial and error. Ham and fish I cure and can keep in my cellar ( under controlled humidity ) for quite sometime. I had a cured ham for 8 months, I did heat to an internal temp of 180 before eating and it was damn tasty. I had salt cured blue gill for about the same time but it was as dry as leather, this is why it kept so well. Reducing the moisture to a level that bacterias do not like is the key. Understanding the chemistry of your meat and what you want to do with it is very important. I learned from my grandfather more than 25 years ago and he learned from his.
 

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Proper meat curing is an art and a science. I'd suggest getting some good books on it. An alternative preservation method is simply home canning it.
 

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Proper meat curing is an art and a science. I'd suggest getting some good books on it. An alternative preservation method is simply home canning it.
Absolutly! A good pressure canner is all ya need. I make a corned venison and can it. Makes an awesome hash with potatoes.
 

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Your move Sparky...
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I salt cure much of the pork we take in every year. To be perfectly honest though I keep most of it in the frdge/freezer anyway because frankly it doesn't last that long.

In my experience, getting pork to last more than 3 months is irrelevant because it is GONE long before then. Just go kill another one.
 

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We can salt meat. The proper term is called 'corning', and there are many recipes.
In 2 quarts of water, usually no more than about 3/4 cup of salt. Plus bay leaves, cloves, peppercorns, garlic, allspice, brown sugar, and saltpeter.

Mix: 10 ounces of sugar;
2 1/2 ounces of sodium nitrate;
3 pounds of salt;
3 level teaspoons of pepper;
1 level teaspoon of ground cloves;
6 bay leaves;
12 level teaspoons of mixed pickling spice;
If you care for garlic, mince 4 garlic cloves.
Then add water to make 6-gallons of brine.


You can make corned beef using this recipe:
To 4 gallons of boiling water add:
1 1/2 pounds kosher salt
1 pound dark brown sugar
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 sprig thyme
10 juniper berries
10 crushed peppercorns
1 tablespoon baking soda
5 cloves garlic
Stir it up real good, then add: 5 pound beef
 

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Bravo Zulu
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Jerky is the easiest.

Last week my youngest and I sliced meat thinly, and soaked the meat for an hour in soy sauce and honey and pepper, then we put it in a dehydrator. It is really very good. In the days before dehydrators they would have hung meat in a smoky fire to keep the flies off, and that would have made it taste better as well. Jerky with a smoky flavor is excellent!
So where's the salt come into it?
 

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off-grid organic farmer
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Jerky is the easiest....
I am not so sure about that.

We have made jerky.

The process as you describe is a lot more work than simply making salt-corned meat.

We have a few hog and mutton legs sitting in 5-gallon buckets now filled with brine. It requires no electricity, the meat lasts nearly forever [many years], and does not require as much processing as jerky requires.

In terms of 'easy', jerky is not easier than salt-corning.

You listed: "I sliced meat thinly" ... "we put it in a dehydrator" ... "I did it in the fridge". Which requires more work and/or electricity.

Salt-corning can be done over a woodstove [just to heat the water to mix ingredients] and then the buckets just sit in a cellar.



My wife also has a recipe that we have used that uses the standard selection of herbal preservatives [parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme]. We have one hog leg in a brine of that now. We did it last fall, and will likely begin eating it next winter. I thought I had the recipe on my PC but can not find it now.
 

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Well I searched around on the internet and I mostly found alot of stuff about smoking , and stuff about brines. I am very new to all this survivalist stuff so I was looking for a dumbed down version. From what I gather it Takes Salt, potassium Nitrate, and Sugar. I could be very wrong on those ingredients though. Can anyone break it down to me dummy style? Thanks for the help!
try "mortons quick cure". works great. or you can make your oun with 94% noniodized salt to 6 % sodium nitrite. the sugar isnt for curiing its for flavor. you can also add your favorite spices. ive been curing meats for over 32 years its very easy. have fun. if you use brine get a good injector for getting to the bone real well. look on this site http://proprocessor.com/meatcuring.htm i use Item # 600-403. it works wonders and saves the hands a lot of sorness
 

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So where's the salt come into it?
Soy sauce is INTENSLY salty.

I do not know how long salt meat lasts: we are feeding teenagers and it simply does not last. The Native Americans used DRIED meat all winter long but they were experts. I made mine with a book in one hand.

In the spring, the local Native Americans would plant their gardens in the low areas on the banks of a big river, care for the gardens until the corn and vegetables had been cultivated 3 times, and then head off to go hunting. They would return a couple of months later, hopefully with a winters worth of dried buffalo. Then they harvested their gardens, went fishing in the river, etc.
 

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How long do you think jerky would last that was cooked in that manner? I of course like everyone else here, am planning for worst case scenario. I am trying to find a way to preserve meat without power.
My mother makes some awesome jerky, however we can only get it to last at the most two weeks, cause by then everyone knows she made some, and its all eaten.
 

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seriously though, she keeps her jerky in ziplock bags on the counter for up to two weeks without spoilage. I'm sure with a vacuum sealer it would go for months. Wear gloves when handling it, cause no matter how long you wash your hands, the oils and dirt contribute to faster spoilage.
 

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TEXAS!!!
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Just a suggestion.

I make my own salmon and beef jerky. I soak in a salt brine, a pretty weak one at that. I then dry it in front of a fan. Afterwards, I place it uncovered in the back of the fridge for a month or so on a plate. At that point, it's as dry as a saltine cracker. I have left it in the fridge for over a year and it was still very edible. I have left it hidden (otherwise it would've been eaten) behind the blender on the counter out in the open for a couple of months and it was still edible. I have buried it after dipping in wax, then wrapped in aluminum foil underground in the shade in very dry ground and have found it edible 14 months later.
 

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Just a suggestion.

I make my own salmon and beef jerky. I soak in a salt brine, a pretty weak one at that. I then dry it in front of a fan. Afterwards, I place it uncovered in the back of the fridge for a month or so on a plate. At that point, it's as dry as a saltine cracker. I have left it in the fridge for over a year and it was still very edible. I have left it hidden (otherwise it would've been eaten) behind the blender on the counter out in the open for a couple of months and it was still edible. I have buried it after dipping in wax, then wrapped in aluminum foil underground in the shade in very dry ground and have found it edible 14 months later.
:eek:

WOW!

does "edible" = tasty?
 

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So the OP is obviously wanting to make a ham.

Sometimes I wonder if people read anymore lol. I mean why would you ruin beef by salting it? can't make ham out of beef lol. :D:

Here's everything I could find on salt curing hams. In fact, since I love prosciutto so much, I'm glad I found these vids.

Heer ya be.

This dude makes a big deal out of nothing... prosciutto is salting and drying for 12 months. That's it. But he's helpful He's got like 9 vids or something. I wont post all the links.


Here's one that's far more succinct. I'd watch both guys though. Soemtimes you gotta look at things from different angles.


Here's one more dude.



I'm gonna do this. Probably gonna film a vid.

Log

PS: Here's a fellow from TN who apparently 'can survive' :)

Here's another vid from the South. Everytime they play that Deliverance music you know they GOTS to be serious.

Oh.. here's one more on deer and fish from our Indian buds in Wisconsin
 
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