Jerky

Jerky

I really love crunchy things and salty things and this jerky recipe really hits that sweet spot for me. It’s super easy to make jerky at home if you have the proper tools and the patience. So for this recipe you’ll need a food processor and a dehydrator.

Jerky

Making jerky at home is great because you really get to control the ingredients, the thickness and doneness. Another great thing is that you typically use a lean cut of beef for making jerky which means that it’s more ok to use non grass fed meat (in my not so scientific opinion) because all the bad stuff found in corn fed beef (higher omega 6) is typically found in the fat. That’s why paleo normally says to eat high quality grass fed meat is so that you get all those great benefits (higher omega 3) found in the fat of grass fed meat. But if you’re making jerky with grass fed London broil you really won’t be getting too much of the great benefits about grass fed meat, because that’s normally found in the fat.

Jerky

Does that make sense? If tl;dr then know it’s ok to use regular London broil in this recipe, not grass fed.

There are so many great jerky recipes out there but the spices used in this recipe are inspired from here because I really don’t like my jerky to be soy sauce based and I love the techniques Russ uses here.

Here’s your visual guide:

SpicesMix up all your spices

London broil
Your London broil should look something like this

Slice
Slice with the grain into chunks that can fit into the food processor

Process
Process the chunks against the grain

Let it rip
Let it rip

All processed
It should look something like this once it’s all processed

Put in ziplock
Place all the meat in a ziplock

Add spices
Add the spices

Marinate
Toss the meat and then marinate overnight

Load up the dehydrator
Load up the dehydrator the next morning and evenly space the beef

Set on the Jerky setting
Set the dehydrator to the jerky setting

Rotate every 2 hours
Rotate the bottom trays to the top every 2 hours

Check to see if it's done to your liking
Around 5 hours check the jerky and chew it to see if you like it

Place in ziplock
Once it’s done to your liking place in a ziplock with a paper towel. Do not close until the beef is fully cooled. Enjoy!

Jerky
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Ingredients
  1. Ingredients
  2. 1 T black pepper
  3. 1 1/2T coconut sugar
  4. 1 1/2T salt
  5. 2T paprika
  6. 2t fennel
  7. 2t coriander
  8. 2lb London Broil
  9. Tools
  10. Dehydrator
  11. Food Processor
Instructions
  1. You can totally slice the London broil against the grain in thin strips, but the way I like to do it is from a tip I read here where he uses a food processor. Just cut thick chunks with the grain and let it go in the food processor so it chops against the grain with the mandolin blade.

  2. Process the whole 2lb in the food processor. Remove the chopped up meat and put in a ziplock bag with all the ingredients and let it marinate overnight. This is a dry cure so it may release some liquid in the bag the next day.

  3. Then when you’re ready to put in the dehydrator the next day, place all the meat pieces on the trays of your dehydrator evenly spaced out. Know that the processor probably chopped some pieces weird, don’t worry just mush them with the other pieces and as they dehydrate they will fuse with the other pieces.

  4. Rotate trays every 2 hours from top to bottom. After about 5 or 6 hours it should be done. I consider mine done when it has a little crunch to it but with some squish to some of the thicker pieces still. It’s up to you so play around with it until you get it to your liking.

  5. Place it all in a ziplock bag with a paper towel. Don’t close the bag for a few hours until it fully cools. This should stay good for a couple weeks but we eat it all up in a few days pretty quick.

  6. Enjoy!

That's So Primal https://www.thatssoprimal.com/

Epic Review

Epic Review

When I first went Primal, I was always on the lookout for Primal snacks. It was tough shifting from burning carbs for energy to burning fat for energy at first. I would get super hungry between lunch and dinner on the way home from work. So I searched online for what would be a good Primal snack. As it turns out, jerky and nuts are a great source of protein and fat to hold you over until dinner. During that time I came across something called Pemmican. I so badly wanted to try making some but I was just too lazy. Then I came across Epic. They were basically a modern take on Pemmican, they had meat, berries and fat in the form of nuts. I had to order some.

I ordered a box of the Turkey Almond Cranberry bars and they were the perfect snack for in between meals, or hikes or camping. Perfectly Primal. Then not too long after that I noticed that Epic started branching out to jerky and trail mix packs. First of all, I was super interested to check out these new jerky and nut packs because they just looked so cool. Once again, being that I’m a designer by trade, I got enticed with all this amazing branding and package design. So I reached out to Epic to see if I could review some of their newer products since I was already familiar with their Pemmican-esque bars that you can check out here. Epic was kind enough to send me some of their Bites and one of their Hunt & Harvest packs. So as with any review I wanted to check out the three main categories: Nutritional Profile, Affordability and Taste.

Nutritional Profile

Epic has a bunch of different products and they just keep expanding. So Like I said I started with their bars, then they created some bites and bits, trail mix packs – and now they’re branching out to selling pastured cooking fats and bone broth. What we’re looking at today is their Bites and their Hunt & Harvest packs.

Epic Bacon Bites
Bacon Bites
Total Fat: 7g
Total Carbohydrate: 0g (Dietary Fiber 0g, Sugars 0g)
Protein: 10g
Ingredients: Uncured Bacon (Pork, Water, Sea Salt, Vinegar, Celery Powder), Natural Pork

What? Zero Carbs? Whats not to love about the nutritional profile of these. The way they get away with that is because there is no sugar used for curing or added sugar after the jerky is made. If you’re looking for a perfectly Primal snack, you can’t go wrong with these. Packing some fat and protein and zero carbs. You’re on your way to becoming a fat burning beast.

Chicken Sesame BBQ
Chicken Sesame BBQ Bites
Total Fat: 2.5g
Total Carbohydrate: 8g (Dietary Fiber 1g, Sugars 6g)
Protein: 9g
Ingredients: Natural Chicken, Organic Currants, Sea Salt, Garlic, Onion, Sesame Seeds, Sesame Oil, Ginger, Black Pepper, Red Pepper Flakes, Red Pepper

This chicken jerky comes in with a little more carbs and less fat, but it’s still a low sugar snack and perfectly Primal.

Epic Honest Harvest
Honest Harvest
Total Fat: 8g
Total Carbohydrate: 4g (Dietary Fiber 0g, Sugars 3g)
Protein: 9g
Ingredients: Jerky (grass fed organic beef, wildflower honey, water, salt, organic apple cider vinegar, yeast extract, organic black pepper, celery powder, organic garlic powder). Nut Mix (roasted almonds, roasted pecans, roasted Brazil nuts, pistachios).

This is such a great little package. Packing just the right amount of fat and protein for a snack or on the go meal. Low sugar and real whole ingredients with grass fed beef.

All of these products have an impressive nutritional profile. Epic really focuses on high quality ingredients, pastured raised meats leading to high omega–3 & CLA, gluten free, soy free and low glycemic, paleo friendly snacks. So it’s without a doubt that not just these but any of Epic’s products have an amazing nutritional profile. With their products you don’t have to worry about high fructose corn syrup or other weird ingredients that you don’t know how to pronounce. It’s all real ingredients, not something some scientist invented in a lab.

Affordability

Now this is where things get a little dicey. I love Epics products, but they can be a little pricey. It’s all about comparison though. If you compare this chicken or pork jerky with other jerky you find in the grocery store or gas station it will be filled with sugar and soy – cheap ingredients no doubt. So what happens when you remove the cheap ingredients and use high quality pastured raised meats? The product becomes more expensive, thus we have Epic coming in as follows:

Bacon & Chicken Bites
Price per pack: $6.25
Price per box of 8: $50

Honest Harvest
Price per pack: $3.88
Price per box of 8: $31

Oberto Bacon Jerky
Price per pack: $4.68

Now I put the price of a sorta comparable Oberto Bacon Jerky up there to compare and see that yea Epic is slightly more expensive for a comparable product and size (2.5 oz bag) but the difference is in the ingredients. Oberto’s Bacon Jerky is cured pork with sugar, unlike Epic’s which is uncured. So if uncured pork is a big thing for you, I would say Epic is the way to go if you’re willing to pay the extra money, otherwise Oberto isn’t necessarily a bad option if you’re not concerned with the quality of your protein, as I assume Oberto’s pork is CAFO.

Finding a comparable product for the Hunt & Harvest pack is kinda difficult as there really isn’t any other product out there marketed like this. Sure you could go buy some grass fed jerky yourself and some nuts and come in less expensive, but you’re paying for convenience with this pack. It’s about having a nice little snack for when a craving hits or when you’re on the go – hiking, camping, running from meeting to meeting. For the price I think it’s a great deal to have for when that craving hits.

Taste

I’ve never really been a fan of sweet jerky or really tough jerky and that’s where Epics jerky really shines. They’re all low sugar and very moist so win win. Let’s take a closer look at all the flavors they sent me:

Epic Bacon Bites
Bacon Bites
Soft. Salty. Pork. Expect nothing else and expect nothing more. If you like salty you’ll love this. I really liked these bacon bites. Not tough at all and not sweet at all which is what I like. Pretty great.

Epic Chicken Sesame BBQ Bites
Chicken Sesame BBQ Bites
I normally am not a fan of chicken jerky but I really liked this one. It was just the right amount of sweet from the currants and has a pleasant sesame taste to the jerky. Both of these jerkys aren’t just straight dehydrated muscle meat. They’re sorta ground up and turned into strips and cut up. Sounds gross but it actually works for both of these jerkys.

Epic Honest Harvest
Honest Harvest
Now this is a cool little idea. There are two sides to this pack that have jerky on one side and mixed nuts on the other side. When you open the ziplock you open the divider as well and mix it all together.

Epic Hunt Harvest
Jerky and nuts separated for freshness

Mix Contents
Instructions on how to mix after you open up the bag

Mixed together
Voila, you have a nice little grass fed trail mix

The jerky is traditional grass fed muscle meat dehydrated and the nuts are simply mixed dry roasted nuts. Both of these together had a great trail mix salty taste. The jerky is much tougher than the other stuff but the flavor is nice and salty and peppery. Not sweet at all. I really like the idea of this pack and suggest having a few on hand just for emergency hikes or if you’re strapped for time and need some quick protein and fat.


Conclusion

Epic is onto some great things. They’re a promising company with some pretty amazing products and I look forward to trying out all their new stuff like their cooking fats and bone broth. I’m glad there are companies like Epic out there dedicated to making whole food snacks, with fat and high quality protein. Feel free to share in the comments what your favorite Epic products are. Thanks for reading.

Buy some for yourself: