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Backpacker Magazine – Online Exclusive

Recipe: Wild Turkey Jerky

Opt for this healthier, freshly seasoned Wild Turkey Jerky.

by: Christine and Tim Conners


Total Servings: 12
As Packaged for the Trail: 1 serving
Weight per Serving: About 1 ounce

Ingredients:
2 pounds cooked lean turkey breast

Marinade:
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 teaspoon liquid smoke

Preparation at Home:
1. To facilitate slicing, partially freeze the turkey meat, then cut it into very thin slices, no more than 1/8 inch thick.
2. Combine all marinade ingredients in a small bowl. Stir well.
3. Layer meat slices in a plastic container with a tight-fitting lid and pour the marinade over the turkey, being sure to wet all surfaces.
4. Seal container with lid and place in the refrigerator for about 12 hours. Occasionally invert the container to keep all surfaces of the meat saturated in marinade.
5. Place meat slices in a single layer on cooling racks set on a baking sheet.
6. Dry the meat in the oven, with door closed, for about 4 hours at 155°F, or at your oven’s lowest temperature setting if higher than that.
7. Reduce oven temperature to 130°F, or its lowest setting if higher than that, and continue heating until thoroughly dry. When ready, jerky should be tough but not brittle.
8. Remove jerky from the oven and blot up any beads of fat on the surface of the meat with paper towels.
9. Allow jerky to cool completely before packaging in ziplock bags for the trail.
10. Keep jerky refrigerated until time to leave for the trailhead.

Preparation on the Trail:
1. Eat a few pieces of jerky as a side at lunch. To reduce risk of spoilage, use all jerky within a week or so of removing it from the refrigerator at home.

Tip:
Cut across the grain of the meat for a more tender jerky texture or with the grain for a chewier texture.

Bob Ballou, Minden, Nevada, Lipsmackin’ Backpackin’

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