How to make your own biltong

South Africans love their biltong, and with rugby season in full swing, biltong is consumed by the kilogram. Unfortunately biltong can be a bit pricey. Why not save a bit of money and learn how to make your own biltong with an easy-to-use tool like a biltong maker? By following these simple steps you will be eating your home-made Biltong in no time.


1. Find the right biltong machine

Having the right equipment will help you to make delicious Biltong. From a Biltong maker to a Biltong cutter, you can find the equipment that you need at a bargain price on Junk Mail. When you are looking for a Biltong dryer for sale make sure that you choose one that is in good condition.


2. Choose your meat

An essential part of making tasty biltong is selecting the right meat to use. If you choose the right type of meat, you are off to a great start. There is a wide variety of meat that can be used to make biltong in your Biltong Dryer. From fish to poultry, there are plenty of options to choose from. However, newbies are well advised to start off making biltong from beef. Game meat is another suitable option for first timers. Biltong from these types of meat will be well received at weekend braais as they appeal to most tastes. We suggest that you make your first batch of biltong from Venison as it is leaner than other types of meat which will increase your chances of success. When you are buying Venison for the purpose of making Biltong, the usual factors for meat selection can be used.

You should consider the meat’s cut and fat content as well as aging before you make your choice. The relevance of choosing meat with a low fat content for biltong is that fatty meats spoil easier while they are drying. Both your personal taste and the meat which is available at your local butcher will influence your decision. Although making biltong from prime cuts of meat may seem like the best choice, this can become expensive. With this in mind, it is advisable to weigh up the quality and expense of the meat before making a choice. As the weight of the meat is reduced when it is made into Biltong, you can buy meat in bulk, so look out for bargains at your local butcher or grocer.


3. Prepare the meat

Once you have chosen the right type and cut of meat, you can start the preparation process. The first step is to reduce the fat content of the Biltong which will help the Biltong to last longer. If you enjoy Biltong which includes fat, you can leave some fat on the meat according to your personal preference. The fat will also add flavour to the final product. The trick to making fantastic Biltong is the thickness of the meat.

A Biltong cutter will make this process easier. If the meat pieces are thick, it will prolong the drying process. A good guideline is to cut the meat into pieces that are 20 cm long and 1cm thick. The length of the meat is important as it will affect the amount of space and drying hooks that you require. If you are just starting out and have a limited amount of equipment, longer strips will increase the amount of Biltong that you can make in one go. Alternatively, you can look for an extra Biltong dryer for sale on Junk Mail. As you become more experienced in making your own Biltong, you can experiment by varying the proportions slightly. It is crucial to remove sinew from the meat as leaving it on will result in Biltong that is difficult to chew.


4. Baste your meat

The best way to give your meat a great taste before you start drying it is to baste and season it at the same time. The amount of spices that you use can be adjusted to suit your personal preferences. For spicier Biltong, add more black pepper and paprika. If you want your Biltong to have a deeper flavour, you can leave it to marinade in the fridge for four hours. Here is a handy recipe from YuppieChef which serves as a good starting point for basting and seasoning 2kgs of meat:

250 ml vinegar
½ cup ground coriander
2 tbs ground black pepper
2 tbs sea salt
2 tsps paprika


1. Add a layer of vinegar and spicing mix to your tray.
2. Cut meat pieces and arrange them into a flat layer on the tray.
3. Add an equal amount of vinegar and spices.
4. Place the tray in the fridge to marinade the meat for a minimum of two hours
5. Drying the meat

The process of drying your Biltong will be affected by the area of South Africa that you live in. In arid areas such as the Karoo, the process is easier, while humid coastal regions hinder the drying process. It is advisable to buy a biltong maker so that you can adjust the temperature that the Biltong is dried at. A Biltong Machine will also protect the meat from flies. Humidity is one of the main causes of failure in the drying process. The length of time that the meat takes to dry will be determined by how much meat you use as well as your personal preferences. Drying can take from one to ten days. If you enjoy moist Biltong, reduce the drying time, while you should leave the meat in the Biltong maker for longer if you want a tougher end product.


Now that you know the basics of making Biltong, get out there and start making your own. Don’t forget to add your personal taste to the process as your skills as a Biltong maker progress. Remember to get all the equipment you need from Junk Mail – from a biltong dryer for sale to a biltong cutter, has it all.


Bruce Ungersbock

Bruce is an SEO guy that has his eye on the prize and traffic on his mind. A lover of good music and a connoisseur of all things awesome.

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1 Response

  1. Harry Parker says:

    Made my own from a wooden box, computer fan, light bulb. can take 3-4kg meat. been using Topside. R60to R70kg Vary the method a bit, but will try your spice mix.Not been bad for an Englishman so far. takes about 4 days +- Have good reports dont have much myself. Harry

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