Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

One of our lovely friends from the site gave me some beef jerky at Nina's garden visit a few months ago.  Now, I admit that I was a bit fascinated - the home made stuff makes for great flavoured snack, it was apparently pretty cheap to make and it will last for a few weeks in the fridge.  She said it was easy, but I'd seen the spice mixes at my local shop and they were a bit expensive.  Given everything else I make, it just didn't seem worth the bother.... boy, was I wrong!, although a few things were in my favour:

  • I happen to own a never used dehydrator - I'd bought it for a present for one of my boys.
  • I was smart enough to do some google research prior to starting this little test.

Here's how it unfolded (with instructions) and turned me into a jerky convert:

  • Went to local butcher.  Bought 250 grams of really low fat beef (you don't want fat because it doesn't dry properly).  The butcher sliced it really thin for me.  That was cheap and easy!
  • Made a marinate of oyster sauce, light soy sauce, sweet chilli sauce and some garlic.  Doubled that with olive oil so I had enough to cover the meet.  Chucked it in the fridge for 48 hours.  That was cheap and easy!
  • That night, put it in the dehydrator and let it run over night (in the laundry because that sucker is pretty noisy).  That was cheap and easy!
  • Next night, I sat in front of the telly and munched it.  That was cheap, easy and REALLY darn good. 

I can't imagine how many different marinates I can dream up now.  This stuff is good enough to sell.  Wow.  Dead easy and the only real cost is the meat.  I am now a jerky convert.  And that, my friends, is why I love this site!

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I have recipes that have no flour what-so-ever.  That'd work for ya!

There's plenty of GF flour and rice crumb options out there these days Andy but they behave differently from wheat flour/breadcrumbs. Pure cornflour (not wheaten) is also fine but you wouldn't go putting that into a sausage I wouldn't think.

It's the processed foods that are suspect to a Coeliac. Plain fruit, meat and veg are fine... unless there is a secondary allergy (such as mine for citrus, passionfruit and mango). I mainly stay away from processed foods or read the ingredient lists carefully.

I can't just tuck into something prepared by someone else without knowing everything, down to the smallest ingredient, that went into it. I love food so it's a big disappointment on occasions but after all these years I'm used to it. The pain etc that goes with eating gluten is a real incentive to avoid it not to mention the long term health effects such as bowel cancer.

Hey Craig.  The big news is that my sausage maker arrived today!!!!!!!!!!

I can't wait to start. 

What? Why did I get a sausage maker?  Oh, well, I don't make enough other stuff, do I?  LOL.

Or when the Zombie appocalypse comes, I'll have cheese, sausage, bread and booze now! And even some veges to shove on the burgers!

Great news! I'm still yet to set up a storage unit for cured meats but I love making sausages. Really easy once you do it the second time!
My South African neighbourgh just did some with a BBQ sauce marinade and stir fry beef. I am eager to give it a try myself. I have been a total convert with fruit and fruit leathers so far. I love the coconut wraps too. My toddlers's favourite is tomato/capsicum leather wraps. I am about to "sun-dry" a whole heaps of cherry tomatoes I got for next to nothing.

Can you give some recipes for the coconut and tom/cap leather wraps Valerie?

Hi Lissa,

I basically blitz red capsicum and tomatoes into a thick soup consistency and spread it in round shapes about the size of a small wrap on Teflex sheets. It shrinks a little bit. I have an excalibur so it comes with big square trays. Dehydrate on 41c or 105F for 4 to 6 hours. I then like to take them off the sheets, flip upside down and dehydrate a bit more on the tray until they are completely dry. When very dry they become crispy. You can also have them a bit less dry and more maleable.

With coconut, I use young Thai coconut and blitz coconut flesh and a bit of the coconut water until thick soup concistency.

The sky is the limit. You can add agave syrup, pinch of salt, basil, onions...just beware flavours do concentrate/intensify quite a bit with dehydration.

Amazing stuff Valerie. I have a little solid tray at the bottom of my dehydrator but I haven't tried making wraps yet.

Awww man - here is a shot of my first ever test batch.  They taste good!

Good grief they look good. I'm now craving sausage for brekkie.

" Mr Cumberland The Sausage Maker ", now that sounds authentic ! ( Cumberland sausages from the UK for those who don't know what I am talking about )

I found a recipe for it Nina!  I'm going to give it a crack. Maybe next weekend's adventure. 


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Vetiver grass helps to stabilise soil and protects it against erosion.  It can protect against pests and weeds. Vetiver is also used as animal feed. (Wiki.)

GrowVetiver is a plant nursery run by Dave & Keir Riley that harvests and grows Vetiver grass for local community applications and use. It is based in Beachmere, just north of Brisbane, Australia.

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