Pemmican/ Jerky

Native Americans didn’t have refrigeration unless it was winter time. This was overcome by preserving meat in this fasion. This is one method to making pemmican. Another method is the same, except grinding the meat into dust add dried fruits and/or wild onion and then pouring tallow over the top. Then using an axe to chop off what you wanted to eat. It was eaten straight up or boiled in its own tallow. This is the simpler method. When they used berries it really became the perfect superfood. The berries were are high in vitamins c and other nutrients. This would prevent scurvy. If kept dry and sealed in tallow, it could last 50 years they estimate.


  1. 3 pounds lean beef
  2. As needed salt
  3. As needed ground black pepper
  4. As needed metal skewers
  5. 1/3 cup melted bison tallow


  1. Slice salt and pepper the beef. Slice this thinly. Cover all the pieces well. I put them into a ziploc bag and beat them thinner. This also incorporated the salt and pepper into the meat.

  2. Get your fire started. I used oak, pecan, and hickory wood. I built the fire on one end of the grill. This is to use indirect heat.

  3. Put the strips onto a skewer on one end of the strips. I have a vegetable griller pan, to place the skewers on. Remember that the skewers get hot also.

  4. When the meat is done, some may become charcoal lol, put into a bowl. Cook times very on thickness of meat and heat of the fire. This took about 2 hours start to finish. About 90 minutes was cook time.

  5. Get the tallow, melt it down. Not to lots of heat but like candle wax.

  6. Coat each piece well with the warm tallow.

  7. Put into a ziploc bag you can see where the tallow is cooling leaving a candle wax like residue, and making an airtight seal. This will keep for a very long time several months to years. You can also keep in a jar. I hope you enjoy!!!

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