A Rinella Recipe: Oven-Dried Jerky
Even if you don’t have access to a smokehouse or food dehydrator, you can still make great jerky just by using a standard household oven. Follow any set of directions for wild game jerky using venison, moose, elk, caribou, bighorn sheep, you name it. Just make sure it’s red meat that’s been trimmed of fat and sinew. (Make sure to slice with the grain when cutting meat for jerky.) After the meat is seasoned with whatever spice rub you’re using, let it sit in the fridge for a day or so.
Then cut some pieces of 1/4” (or thereabouts) wire mesh that can sit over your oven’s existing rack. Place the meat on these pieces of mesh and set the oven to it’s lowest possible setting. 180 degrees or so is good. Then take an aluminum beer can — a pop will work in a pinch — and close the oven door against the middle so that the can forms a small gap. This allows some heat and moisture to escape from the oven. Watch the meat carefully, but it should take a few hours to dry meat that’s been sliced 1/4” thick. Check it by hand and taste, It’s ready when it’s no longer rubbery.