Basic Biltong

Biltong is the perfect healthy high-protein low fat snack, and it is surprisingly easy to make this South African staple at home.

Information on our homemade Biltong dryer can be found on our blog.

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Basic Biltong

Prep Time 19 hours
Curing 5 days
Servings 3 pieces

Ingredients

  • 600 g piece of silverside beef
  • 10 g dairy cheese salt (non-iodized)
  • 4 g coriander
  • 1 g saltpetre
  • 1 g freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 g garlic powder

Instructions

  1. Cut the beef into about 3 thick slices about 25mm thick. 

The marinade

  1. Scorch the coriander by taking 15 g of whole coriander per 5 g required and toasting it in a dry frying pan until it starts to brown. 

  2. Grind the hot coriander in a pestle and mortar or blitz in a food processor then pass through a sieve to remove the husks. 

  3. Mix the salt, saltpetre, coriander, pepper and garlic together.  

  4. (Dairy salt needs to be used as the table salt you can buy in the supermarket contains anti-caking agents and Iodine salts which make your biltong taste bad.

  5. (Saltpetre is potassium nitrate and food-grade stuff can be purchased over the net. Adding this prohibits the growth of mould and bacteria in the meat as well as giving the biltong it characteristic red colour through the centre.

  6. Coat your beef in the salt spice mixture all over, place in a plastic container (not metal as this will react with the vinegar and give a rancid taste) and then drizzle brown malt vinegar over until both sides of each piece have been coated in the vinegar. 

  7. Allow the beef to marinate for at least 18 hours, turning once to ensure all of the meat comes into contact with the vinegar. All surfaces of the meat should be brown in colour. 

Curing the beef

  1. When you are ready to hang the beef, place a biltong hook though one end of each piece and dip briefly into a solution of hot vinegar (70ml brown vinegar per litre of hot water). This will rinse off the surface salt but leave most of your yummy spices behind. 

  2. Allow the excess hot vinegar solution to drain from the meat for a few seconds and the hang the biltong in the dryer cabinet, making sure the pieces are not touching each other to maintain good air flow. 

  3. Hang for about 5 days until the pieces are dry to your liking. 

Cutting

  1. With a sharp knife, slice each piece into thin slivers. 


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