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Biltong - Cured Beef

2

Comments

  • caliking
    caliking Posts: 18,409
    Thats a showstopper of a biltong box @johnmitchell. Already looks delicious!

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • Canugghead
    Canugghead Posts: 10,728
    Apology to Mark for thread jacking.

    @caliking @Botch I stocked up on the 100 watts thinking I could use it to keep the egg warm overnight for early winter morning startups, never tried it though. If I was to use it in a Biltong box I think a 25w or 40w appliance incandescent bulbs still available at HD or Lowes would be more appropriate.

    @johnmitchell nice box you got there, if I'm going to make one I'd probably use wood since it's easier to source and work with. Won't be a conversation piece like yours though. Dumb question, is the lamp turned on constantly for warmth? 

    This brings back memories of our folks making Chinese sausages back home, they could only hang them out to dry during the winter months when there was "northern wind".

    @lkapigian you are darn right about the rabbit hole, someone stop me!
    canuckland
  • johnmitchell
    johnmitchell Posts: 6,429
    @Canugghead. The light in the picture is purely ornamental and not a heat source 
    Greensboro North Carolina
    When in doubt Accelerate....
  • Mark_B_Good
    Mark_B_Good Posts: 1,424
    lkapigian said:
    @caliking, you should know that organized people prepared for the demise of incandescent bulbs  ;)

    Here's @johnmitchell's box which also looks real nice. Similarly to @Mark_B_Good's box I like the simplicity of fan only.

    @caliking do you recall deets of your BIL's box, just lamp or did he have fan as well? @lkapigian got me thinking if I have both lamp and fan won't it be like a dehydrator? Will I have to worry about +/- humidity as well? I don't want to get sucked into dry aging! I know I'm overthunking this, help.
    You don’t need a lamp unless it’s super cold, but In essence you are dehydrating, just much slower @Mark_B_Good and @johnmitchell Biltong boxes are wonderful and all you need , ideally you are just trying to emulate the conditions in South Africa

    dry aging is done at a much lower temp 30-35f as there is no salt, now dry curing , yes you are in the rabbit hole lol
    Agreed, my box doesn't have a lamp, and I don't think it is necessary. My basement is about 70F, and probably 70% humidity.  South Africa is a big country, lol ... the conditions range from 30F to 100F, and 30% humidity to 100% ... my point is, this isn't complicated ... it's a matter of days to cure the meat ... and depending on your specific conditions, it could take a day less or a day more. It's a fairly simply, fool proof method ... the vinegar used to initially season the meat, essentially sanitizes the meat ... but generally guidance is probably keep it above 65F, best is 70F to 80F ... humidity at 60% to 80% probably okay. The fan helps A LOT ... I think that is the trick to getting it done in 4 days.
    Napoleon Prestige Pro 665, XL BGE, Lots of time for BBQ!
  • Canugghead
    Canugghead Posts: 10,728
    @Mark_B_Good really appreciate the intel. I agree weighing the rub makes more sense; saw a video where the guy dips the meat in a box of rub and ended up discarding the 'contaminated' rub, what a waste but I guess that's how he can sell more rub, lol. If I was to do that I'd vac seal and freeze the spill over rub for reuse.
    canuckland
  • Mark_B_Good
    Mark_B_Good Posts: 1,424
    Well, it's hard to salvage the seasoning you lose to the vinegar mix while it cures overnight. But one thing I do salvage ... especially when I make chili bites ... is I collect all the seasoning that comes off as I handle the cured meat when I remove it from the biltong box. I have a foil pan at the bottom of the box to collect anything that comes off (mainly to keep my biltong box clean).  The chili bites lose a lot of seasoning when they are handled ... and it ends up being easily 1/2 cup of seasoning. Most of this is fresh seasoning I added after the cure (the 2nd coat which I add just before I hang).  I then mix this recovered seasoning in with my next batch (I use this part for the curing process ... and still need to add some fresh seasoning).
    Napoleon Prestige Pro 665, XL BGE, Lots of time for BBQ!
  • Canugghead
    Canugghead Posts: 10,728
    ^^^ that's what I meant, dry seasoning that falls off. sorry I didn't make myself clear. Thanks for the details.
    canuckland
  • OhioEgger
    OhioEgger Posts: 883
    Is there any reason I couldn't do this in my Excalibur dehydrator at the lowest heat setting?
    Cincinnati, Ohio. Large BGE since 2011. Still learning.
  • lkapigian
    lkapigian Posts: 10,335
    OhioEgger said:
    Is there any reason I couldn't do this in my Excalibur dehydrator at the lowest heat setting?
    You certainly can
    Visalia, Ca @lkapigian
  • Canugghead
    Canugghead Posts: 10,728
    lkapigian said:
    OhioEgger said:
    Is there any reason I couldn't do this in my Excalibur dehydrator at the lowest heat setting?
    You certainly can
    Dumb question, not sure how well or evenly chunky logs of meat will cure in a confined space unless you rotate them? If one has to pre slice then wouldn't that be like jerky? The beauty of a Biltong box is its simplicity and hands off operation.
    canuckland
  • Mark_B_Good
    Mark_B_Good Posts: 1,424
    ^^^ that's what I meant, dry seasoning that falls off. sorry I didn't make myself clear. Thanks for the details.
    I don't find a lot falls off the biltong ... maybe because the pieces are larger?  But a lot does fall off the chili bites ... A LOT!
    Napoleon Prestige Pro 665, XL BGE, Lots of time for BBQ!
  • Mark_B_Good
    Mark_B_Good Posts: 1,424
    OhioEgger said:
    Is there any reason I couldn't do this in my Excalibur dehydrator at the lowest heat setting?
    How low is the lowest heat setting? I don't see an issue, unless you're cooking the meat.  I'd say up to 80F is probably okay.

    Give it a try, it literally is so easy to make ... once you do the first batch, you'll be like this is the easiest thing on the planet.  Cut into 3/4" to 1" steaks, soak in vinegar spice mix overnight, take them out in the morning ... maybe add a bit more spice, hang for 4 days in a ventilated compartment (in south africa ... they actually don't even do that, they hang the meat in their garage lol) ... and then start slicing and eating!
    Napoleon Prestige Pro 665, XL BGE, Lots of time for BBQ!
  • OhioEgger
    OhioEgger Posts: 883
    OhioEgger said:
    Is there any reason I couldn't do this in my Excalibur dehydrator at the lowest heat setting?
    How low is the lowest heat setting? I don't see an issue, unless you're cooking the meat.  I'd say up to 80F is probably okay.
    Hmm. My lowest setting is 85°F so maybe not the best idea.
    Cincinnati, Ohio. Large BGE since 2011. Still learning.
  • Mark_B_Good
    Mark_B_Good Posts: 1,424
    OhioEgger said:
    OhioEgger said:
    Is there any reason I couldn't do this in my Excalibur dehydrator at the lowest heat setting?
    How low is the lowest heat setting? I don't see an issue, unless you're cooking the meat.  I'd say up to 80F is probably okay.
    Hmm. My lowest setting is 85°F so maybe not the best idea.
    It's not an exact science ... I'd be willing to try that.
    Mix brown vinegar with 50% water ... mix up a spice (search up hunter's biltong spice) ... and give it a go ... honestly. Don't be afraid.

    I posted the detailed recipe above ... that is all you need.
    Napoleon Prestige Pro 665, XL BGE, Lots of time for BBQ!
  • Dawgtired
    Dawgtired Posts: 621
    Do y’all have issues with white mold? Anyone particularly happy with their unit? I’d like to purchase one, as I’m not the greatest at building things. So any source(s) y’all could recommend would be greatly appreciated!

    If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God, then we will be a nation gone under.

    Ronald Reagan

  • Mark_B_Good
    Mark_B_Good Posts: 1,424
    I've never seen white mold on mine, but it's mentioned in several recipes, that if you do see it, just dip a paper towel in brown vinegar and wipe the mold off. It seems very easy to deal with.
    Napoleon Prestige Pro 665, XL BGE, Lots of time for BBQ!
  • Botch
    Botch Posts: 14,900
    I can see in the photos in the OP that "brown vinegar" is not AC vinegar but something else; is it Asian, or South African?  Amazoid shows brown rice vinegars, and malt vinegars.  
    ____________________________________________

    So, two dyslexics walk into a bra...



  • lkapigian
    lkapigian Posts: 10,335
    Botch said:
    I can see in the photos in the OP that "brown vinegar" is not AC vinegar but something else; is it Asian, or South African?  Amazoid shows brown rice vinegars, and malt vinegars.  
    Typically it’s malt vinegar 
    Visalia, Ca @lkapigian
  • Ybabpmuts
    Ybabpmuts Posts: 835
    I love malt vinegar on hot French fries. I never thought of putting it on my BillyBong though.
  • Ybabpmuts said:
    I love malt vinegar on hot French fries. I never thought of putting it on my BillyBong though.
    Please don’t try it and then try to taste your own BillyBong.  I’ve heard of people breaking their necks that way.  
    "I've made a note never to piss you two off." - Stike
  • Ybabpmuts
    Ybabpmuts Posts: 835
    If I could taste my own BillyBong I'd have never left the house to get the vinegar in the first place.
  • Canugghead
    Canugghead Posts: 10,728
    edited September 23
    Some recipes call for measuring %weight loss, do you guys check the weights before/after?
    canuckland
  • Mark_B_Good
    Mark_B_Good Posts: 1,424
    edited September 23
    Some recipes call for measuring %weight loss, do you guys check the weights before/after?
    No. But it's probably like 30%.

    You also lose a bit trimming up the steaks. 
    Napoleon Prestige Pro 665, XL BGE, Lots of time for BBQ!
  • Mark_B_Good
    Mark_B_Good Posts: 1,424
    Botch said:
    I can see in the photos in the OP that "brown vinegar" is not AC vinegar but something else; is it Asian, or South African?  Amazoid shows brown rice vinegars, and malt vinegars.  
    This is the stuff I use... 


    Napoleon Prestige Pro 665, XL BGE, Lots of time for BBQ!
  • Canugghead
    Canugghead Posts: 10,728
    Got a 'Is it Safe?' question. 
    Can I use this polypropylene box, keeping in mind the meat doesn't touch it and there's no heat? A lot easier than making a wooden box  :)


    A lot has changed since I bought a cpu case fan decades ago. It appears most if not all of them are now LED lit. My wild guess is bit coin miners need the visual to know if the fan is running? There's also a sticker on the wire that says warranty is void if the connectors are removed; I MacGyver'd a pair of wires between one of the connectors and output plug of an old 12v power supply. 
    canuckland
  • Mark_B_Good
    Mark_B_Good Posts: 1,424
    Got a 'Is it Safe?' question. 
    Can I use this polypropylene box, keeping in mind the meat doesn't touch it and there's no heat? A lot easier than making a wooden box  :)


    A lot has changed since I bought a cpu case fan decades ago. It appears most if not all of them are now LED lit. My wild guess is bit coin miners need the visual to know if the fan is running? There's also a sticker on the wire that says warranty is void if the connectors are removed; I MacGyver'd a pair of wires between one of the connectors and output plug of an old 12v power supply. 
    I couldn't comment chemically, but I found this:

    Biltong Machine Executive Bar-Top Model – Biltongboks UK

    "The base and lid are made from polypropylene, the same material as Tupperware."
    Napoleon Prestige Pro 665, XL BGE, Lots of time for BBQ!
  • Canugghead
    Canugghead Posts: 10,728
    fwiw, just checked a large commercial sized margarine tub, it has the same #5 PP classification.

    Just noticed Mark's reply, going to visit that url. Thanks.
    canuckland
  • Canugghead
    Canugghead Posts: 10,728
    Thanks Mark. I'm good, #5 PP = Polypropylene and my setup has zero heat vs. theirs with heat plate.
    canuckland
  • johnmitchell
    johnmitchell Posts: 6,429
    This is the biltong box that I have. 
    Greensboro North Carolina
    When in doubt Accelerate....