Biltong Recipes

Most of the recipes below are based on the basic steps described on this site for preparation and spicing of the meat.
The differences are essentially in the duration of salting, combination and proportions of spices, and only a few other small variations in the overall process.

Beginners Luck
This is the recipe I used for the first attempts:

  • Clean and prepare the meat.
  • Salt the meat using coarse rock-salt and place in an enamal or plastic tray.
  • After the meat has "sweated" (see notes below on the duration of this stage) wash the meat using warm Vinegar.
  • Dust the meat with a mixture of scorched crushed Coriander (5), Pepper (2), Sugar (0.5) and Bicarbonate of Soda (0.1). The bracketed numbers indicate the approximate proportions.
  • Hang meat to dry.

  • The first time I left the meat salted overnight. The result (as noted in the basic steps) was a reasonably salty product. In subsequent variations of this receipe I left the meat salted for 2 to 4 hours.
  • Washing the salt using vinegar tended to inhibit mould but also left the meat with a distinct taste that did come through the overall flavour. This was more pronounced when I actually left the meat in vinegar for 20 minutes before dusting with spices.
  • The first batch of biltong was very spicy - too much pepper.

Having sampled Salmon Jerky in Canada, I thought that the Biltong process would lend itself to the preparation of other meats. Preferring to not to risk Salmonella poisoning should the fish not dry properly, I decided to opt for Botulism instead. Enter Chicken biltong-style - became known at home as Chicktong.

  • I tried two variations here by marinating some chicken strips in Teriyaki sauce and some in Tandoori spices for about 12 hours.
  • After wiping off excess spices I hung the meat with a mild dusting of Bicarboate of Soda. No other preparation was necessary.
  • Left the meat to dry for too long - was rock-hard by the time it was tasted.
  • The Teriyaki version was "nothing special". The Tandoori version was great.

Close to the Real Thing
The most elusive result was to get that authentic Biltong taste - that characteristic Coriander taste. Hein Preller offered his own recipe which was not only very simple but also yielded a very resonable product.

  • Clean and prepare the meat.
  • Prepare a mixture of spices comprising 50% Salt, 20% Brown Sugar, and 30% mixture of fine Coriander, coarse Coriander, and fine Pepper.
  • Spice the meat as follows: Spray some vinegar in an enamal or plastic tray, sprinkle some spice mix on top of this, and lay the meat strips on top. Repeat layers of spice and meat until and sprinkle more spice mix on the meat until it is all covered.
  • Leave overnight and then hang without any washing or removing any spice mix.
  • The above proportions resulted in a rather peppery product but the Coriander tatse was closer to what I was looking for.

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