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The Shotem' and Caughtem' Blog is the place to find the latest reviews and commentary on gear, destinations, conditions, events, and general knowledge to inform our readers and give our opinions to anyone listening.

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Monday, 26 August 2013 20:48

Weston Products Meat Deer Jerky

Weston Products Seasoning Weston Products Seasoning

We at Shotem and Caughtem love it when people give us the opportunity to try something new.  So when Weston Products asked us to try out some of their seasoning kits, we were more than happy to use the excuse to clean out some room in our deep freezer.  The first review they asked us to complete was on the two Jerky seasoning kits they provided.  Their Signature Jerky Tonic and the Hot and Spicy Jerky Dust.  As you can see from the photo above they also gave us Sausage marinades for another review.  So lets talk Jerky.

For those of you that love Jerky, like we do, the thought of trying it for yourself might seem a little overwhelming.  I know that some of us at Shotem and Caughtem just pay to get ours made from the processors we use.  So we felt it best to throw a couple of beginners in the mix to see what they would like to know more about and to truly test out the product.  For those that have never made Jerky before but don't like paying 7 dollars for a couple of ounces of Jerky the task is easier than one might think.  

Jerky is made through a process of slow, low and dry constant heat.  It can be done with a smoker, a dehydrator, a proofer or even your conventional oven with a door slightly opened.  It requires a way to either hang the strips of meat, a pirferated pan or wire racks like in the photo below.  It is important that all sides of the meat get an equal cook time.  

Any muscle portion from any animal can be used to make jerky.  We selected deer meat since the season is quickly approaching and we needed a little extra room in the deep freezer.  The secret to making jerky is to make sure you use thin consistent slices.  This will speed your cook time and allow for a more even cook when doing large amounts of meat.  Make sure you have removed all the fat from your slices.  

Then our good friends at Weston stepped in and we mixed our 3.5 pounds of sliced meat with 7.5 tablespoons of their Signature Jerky Tonic and .75 teaspoons of curing salt per their instructions found in the kit.  We allowed the meat to marinate.  Next we mixed the Hot and Spicy Jerky Dust with water per their instructions and added it to another 3.5 pounds of meat.  We only let this product stand at room temperature for about thirty minutes before laying it on our racks.  3 hours later at a constant temperature of around 160 degrees and we were done.  We let the jerky cool for about an hour on the racks before we gave them a try and bagged them up.

Since a lot of us are Spicy kind of Jerky people, we were amazed by the great flavor Weston had come up with for their Hot and Spicy Jerky Dust.  We felt it had just the right amount of kick and a great flavor profile.  We were equally impressed with their Signature Jerky Tonic.  Even though next time we plan on deviating just a little from their instructions and adding just a little more product during marinading, we felt they had found a perfect balance of soy, ginger and shallots.  We were even more pleased by the fact that their instructions for usage on their curing salt was perfect.  That has always been the hardest part of finding the perfect home made Jerky, the salt content.  Not enough and you might risk a stomach ache or worse but too much and you might as well just grab a salt shaker instead.  We used their salt per their direction and found a perfect salt blend for the meat.  We used the pink salt cure they provided at just a little over 1/4 teaspoon per pound of meat.  Though we had a large amount of salt left over we plan on putting it to use again soon as the season quickly approaches.  So many thanks to Weston for that knowledge.    

Let us know your Jerky secrets in the comment section below.  We hope you visit back soon as we test their seasoning in sticks and suasage in the coming weeks.  Should you like to order some product for yourself we recommend visiting www.westonsupply.com Also, they were kind enough to provide us with two kits of each we will be giving away some of these products to our Shotem of the Month winners in their prize packs so start entering your photos as hunting season starts in just 6 days.......not that we are counting.