When it comes to cooking, my husband Jeff doesn’t….
He is happy to take what I have marinated out to the grill with an ice cold beer, and will return with expertly grilled steak, fish, veggies, or whatever else you put on a platter for him. He is a grill master, and an excellent cocktail maker.
But when it comes to anything else that involves sauteeing, mixing, or reading a recipe, it just doesn’t happen.
when it comes to making homemade beef jerky and blueberry pancakes.
Our friend Gary made this beef jerky and brought it along on a weekend getaway many years ago. From that first bite we were all addicted, and Jeff decided that this was something he wanted to make as his annual contribution to the spreading of holiday cheer.
So, while my daughters and I bake cookies, Jeff breaks out his hand written beef jerky recipe, which as you can see, has seen its better days. It’s spattered with liquid smoke, and the ink has now blurred.
But each year this familiar paper finds its way out of the holiday recipe binder and Jeff takes over the kitchen to prepare what people have come to love as his famous beef jerky. –It is a little bit famous (at least it is to our friends and famiy).
The process begins one day ahead, by preparing the marinade, and slicing the flank steak into 1/4-inch-thick slices. The flank steak is marinated overnight, before baking in a 170 degree oven 4-6 hours.
Jeff lines the bottom rack of the oven with foil to catch the drips and avoid making a huge mess.
To check the jerky’s doneness, Jeff says to give it a taste as you get closer to the finish time. You want it to be somewhat dry, but it should still have a nice degree of chewiness as well. If you have a convection setting on your oven, use it to reduce the bake time to 3 1/2 hours. You may also prepare the jerky in a dehydrator if you have one of those machines.
I have to say, this stuff is completely addicting, and disappears quickly! Enjoy~
1 teaspoon season salt
1 tablespoon liquid smoke
1/4 cup worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup soy sauce
5-7 cloves garlic, minced
1 small yellow onion, minced
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
Hot sauce to taste (I used 5-7 tablespoons)
1 1/2 pounds flank steak
Combine all marinade ingredients together in a large bowl. Set aside.
Trim fat from flank steak. Partially freeze flank steak before slicing with the grain into 1/4-inch thick slices.
Place sliced flank steak in marinade and mix thoroughly until steak is well coated. Marinate overnight.
Set oven temperature to lowest setting. If you have a convection oven, set to convection warm. Cover middle rack of oven with aluminum foil (to catch drips).
Lay marinated flank steak slices in a single layer directly on the top of the rack in oven. Leave oven door cracked. Bake 4-6 hours or until the jerky is dry but slightly chewy. (taste as you go!)