Venison is an excellent source of protein with practically no fat but you gotta know a hunter. Luckily I have a friend who has a friend who is a hunter. These smell so good you'll want to chew on a few yourself!
Oh My Deer Jerky
Cook Time: 8-10 hours
Calories from fat: __
- 1 pound ground venison
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- The meat should be coarsely ground.
- Using your hands thoroughly mix the ingredients.
- Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Line the tray with plastic wrap.
- Using your fingers press the meat mixture into a very thin layer on the tray.
- Dehydrate until the meat has firmed up which will take about 2 hours. This is what it looks like.
- Remove the meat from the plastic wrap, cut into strips, and place back on the tray, least cooked side up so it won't stick to the tray.
- Continue dehydrating until the meat is completely dry, about 5 to 10 hours total depending on your machine.
If you don't have a dehydrator, you can make them in the oven.
- Roll out the meat to an even thickness (about 1/8") between two sheets of wax paper.
- Place them in the freezer until solid. I have a side by side refrigerator so a large sheet will not fit – not a problem since I cut it in half with kitchen shears and placed one on top of the other.
- Remove and cut into strips. To keep straight I used a pizza cutter to score and then cut with kitchen shears but a sharp knife will certainly work. Remember they will shrink while cooking.
- Line the cookie sheet with tin foil and lightly spray with olive oil. You could lay the strips directly on the oven racks if they aren’t too thin.
- Remove top piece of wax paper, lay jerky face down on sheet, and then remove second piece of paper.
- Bake at lowest temperature your oven will go (mine is 170 degrees) for 3 to 4 hours.
- Drying time varies with moisture content and thickness of jerky. Open oven door occasionally and turn jerky once or twice during drying.
Once the jerky has cooled completely it can be stored in the refrigerator in a jar with a tight fitting lid or in the freezer if it is to be kept for a long period of time.
Don't have access to deer meat? These can be made with virtually any ground meat.