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Aug 23, 2018

Rabbit Jerky

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I've been making jerky out of the rabbit belly flaps for many years. It's an easy process and a great way to utilize belly flaps. A friend recently turned me on to an orange ginger marinade for making rabbit jerky that is by far my favorite flavor to date. Rabbit jerky isn't like the jerky that comes from beef, which is thin and chewy, rabbit jerky is much thinner and much chewier.

 

 

3 lbs belly flaps with visible fat removed

 

Marinade

1 cup orange juice

1 cup soy sauce or 1/2 cup tamari

½ cup honey or other sweetner

1 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes

1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger or 1/2 tsp ginger powder

½ teaspoon Instacure #1

 

The first thing you want to do is cut all the visible fat off the meat, if there is any visible fat. Fat does not dehydrate and will create mold on your jerky if it's kept at room temperature. You can store jerky with fat on it in the freezer and defrost it in the amount you'll use up quickly, storing those amount in the refrigerator if you prefer to leave some fat on the meat.

 

I slice the belly flaps into strips, about 3/4 - 1 inch wide, then place all the strips into a resealable bag with the marinade, making sure all the meat is fully covered, and refrigerate for 24 - 72 hrs. The longer the meat is in the marinade, the stronger and saltier the flavor will be. Turn the meat in the marinade a few times during the day to make sure all the pieces are in contact with the sauce.

 

When ready, remove the meat from the marinade and pat dry with paper towels. Place the strips in single layers on a mesh dehydrator sheet and follow your dehydrators guide for drying jerky.

 

 

If you don't have a dehydrator, you can lay the strips in a single layer across a wire rack over a baking sheet and set in the oven on 'warm' until the meat is dry, but still pliable, about 6-8 hours.

 

Jerky that's been properly dried and free of fat will store at room temperature for about a month. You can also store it in the refrigerator or freezer indefinitely.

 

If you've over dried your jerky in error, you can re-hydrate the individual pieces as needed by placing them in a plastic bag with a slice of two of an apple. The apple slice will give off a small amount of moisture in the close bag and will hydrate the jerky a bit.