Friday, 2 September 2011

Biltong Recipe

Biltong is South African dried meat, a delicacy a bit similar to "beef jerky".

What you need:
  • an electric fan
  • a light
  • 1 kg meat - many different meats can be used. If you do not have access to ostrich or game etc then try a cut of beef like eye of the round or flank.
  • some vinegar
  • less than a table spoon of course salt (or Kosher salt)
  • 1/4 cup of brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup of coriander (whole)(get it at a bulk food store)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • string
You also need a good knife, fridge, electricity, scissors, a couple of bowls, some nails or hooks, a hammer and someone to make fun of you for trying to maintain your South African heritage. A couple other ingredients that I have never used but you may wish to use include bicarbonate of soda (apparently to prevent mould setting in) and saltpetre which acts as a preservative and gives the biltong a bright red colour.


  • Wash the meat.
  • Cut the meat at an angle against the grain into about one inch strips.
  • Sprinkle vinegar over the meat
  • Place the coriander in a bag and lightly crush the whole coriander so that the effect of the coriander will be greater.
  • Make the "biltong mix" by combining the course salt, brown sugar, coriander, black pepper.
  • Dip the meat into the "biltong mix" until all the mix is used up.
  • Place the meat in a tray for a few hours, or over night, in the fridge.
  • After a few hours dump any blood that has seeped out of the meat.
  • Dip the biltong quickly into a water/vinegar mixture to remove surface salt.
  • Hang the biltong by making a very small incision through the slice of meat with a knife about an inch from the end of the meat.
  • Cut the string into about 10 inch strips which are placed through the meat and tied to form a loop.
  • Hang the biltong in a place not to far from an electrical outlet by taking the loop of string and place it on the hook or nail or hangar or whatever device you have created to suspend the meat.
  • To dry the meat turn on the light(regular light bulb) and the fan and leave for about 4-7 days depending on humidity, temperature and taste.