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A Guide To Meat Preservation In The Wild

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When you’re attempting to outlive within the wild, meat preservation is a talent that may turn out to be useful. Here’s why and the way to protect meat for survival.

3 Methods of Meat Preservation

There are 4 main pillars of survival: Food, water, fireplace, and shelter.

The rule of threes states that you may solely survive three hours with out heat from fireplace or shelter, three days with out water, and three weeks with out meals. Food ultimately turns into very important, however it isn’t probably the most pressing precedence in survival conditions.

So why does it stay so essential?

While it could take weeks to die of hunger, you begin to see the consequences virtually instantly. When you deprive your physique of energy, it begins to actually eat itself.

First, the physique burns fats reserves for energy. At this level, you are feeling some starvation pangs and maybe weak spot or a headache, however nothing extreme.

Within every week or two, the physique strikes on to burning muscle mass and organ tissue.  This is the place issues get tough. You will expertise despair, confusion, disorientation, lack of motor abilities, weak spot, lightheadedness, and excessive physique pains together with extreme complications.

Well earlier than you die of hunger, the method will make it virtually inconceivable to operate. This implies that different important duties reminiscent of gathering water and firewood might not occur. In addition, meals is important as a morale booster so you have got the motivation to maintain going.

The largest challenge with meals within the wild is preservation. Preserving meat within the wild is just not simple. Without electrical energy, freezing or refrigerating meat is sort of inconceivable.

We should assume again to the time of our ancestors after they didn’t have electrical energy for this goal. People would go searching and harvest meat, however then had to determine the way to preserve it preserved to eat over an extended time frame.

While it’s difficult, you do have a number of good choices. Below, we are going to cowl the other ways you’ll be able to successfully protect meat within the wild for future use.

1. Freezing or Chilling

Freezing or Chilling | A Guide To Meat Preservation In The Wild

Without electrical energy, freezing or chilling meat might be very troublesome. If it’s winter, you’ll be able to bury meat in snow or encompass it with blocks of ice. However, this does go away it susceptible for animals to get at it. Some individuals will cowl the meat in snow after which in heavy rocks to attempt to preserve predators away.

Also, if the air temperatures are under freezing, you’ll be able to simply dangle a bear bag. Tie the meat in a bag and connect an extended piece of cordage. Throw it over a department greater than 10 toes off of the bottom and pull it up.  Tie it off, and will probably be excessive sufficient that predators can’t get to it.

You can even cool the meat in a spring or chilly stream. Put it in a bag so fish can’t get to it and sink it with a rock. Then tie it off to a tree or rock on the shore.

Another possibility for chilling is utilizing a zeer pot. This is a tool that makes use of water evaporation to create a cooling impact. It will solely work if in case you have two pots and a few sand.

  • Start by including a number of inches of sand to the underside of the bigger pot.
  • Place the second pot inside, after which fill the hole between the 2 pots with extra sand.
  • Next, saturate the sand with cool water from a stream.
  • Put your meat within the heart pot after which cowl solely the meat with a moist fabric.
  • As the water within the sand evaporates, it is going to calm down the air inside.
  • Continue so as to add cool water to the sand because the water evaporates. This will assist preserve meat contemporary for a number of additional days.

2. Curing and Drying

Curing and Drying | A Guide To Meat Preservation In The Wild

The enemy of meat preservation is moisture. If you’ll be able to take away many of the moisture, the meat will last more. There are two choices to do that within the wild that don’t contain a fireplace.

One is to remedy or salt the meat. This is the method of packing it in salt or a mix of curing salt and different elements. It takes a considerable amount of salt to do that, so for most individuals within the wild, it isn’t a sensible possibility. If you have got the salt, pack at the least an inch all the way in which across the meat and put it in a cool, dry place. Over time the salt will draw out the moisture.

You can even dry meat within the solar whether it is scorching sufficient.

  • First, minimize the meat into skinny strips. I recommend lower than ¼ inch thick.
  • Then rating it on each side to create much more floor space.
  • Find a rock in direct daylight and lay all of it out. Even higher, you’ll be able to construct a rack or string it up with cordage. The extra airflow it has, the higher.

It will take a number of days for the solar to attract out the moisture, so pull the meat inside at evening so animals don’t get to it. When it’s accomplished, it needs to be the consistency of jerky. No moisture ought to come out in case you squeeze it.

If you’ll be able to mix curing and drying, that could be a best-case situation.  You can do one course of earlier than the opposite, or you’ll be able to simply salt it closely earlier than setting the meat out within the solar.

3. Smoking


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Probably the simplest solution to protect meat within the wilderness is smoking. This course of accomplishes two targets. It removes moisture and likewise kills mildew and micro organism whereas leaving a nice smoky taste.

Again, begin by chopping your meat into strips lower than ¼ inch thick. If you narrow throughout the grain of the meat, it is going to dry quicker, and the smoke will penetrate the meat higher. Cut off any fats as this won’t smoke properly. Score each side of the meat and add salt and/or spices if in case you have any.

Next, construct a tripod with three poles. You need the poles to be 4 to 6 toes lengthy relying on how a lot meat you’re smoking. Then, construct a fireplace beneath and let it burn right down to coals.

Coals are far more predictable than flames for estimating temperature. Put your hand above the coals on the desired top. If you’ll be able to maintain your hand there for eight seconds earlier than needing to tug it away, that’s splendid. If not, transfer your hand up or down and check out once more.

Then you have got your smoking top. At that top, both construct racks or use cordage to string up the meat. The aim is to dry the meat, not cook dinner it. If it begins to steam or flip gray, the warmth is simply too excessive.

Typically, it is going to take all day if not two days to correctly smoke meat. Again, you need it to be the consistency of jerky. No moisture ought to come out if you squeeze it. The drier the completed product, the longer it is going to final.

If you have got a tarp, blanket, or plastic sheet you’ll be able to wrap it across the tripod. Keep it a number of toes off of the coals so it doesn’t soften or catch fireplace. This will maintain within the smoke and velocity up the method.

Storing Smoked and Dried Meat

When meat is smoked or dried, you do must be cautious about the way you retailer it. If you have got zipper baggage, that might be splendid. Keep the meat in a cool, dry place.

When you’re able to eat some, solely take out what you want for that meal. You can eat it dry like jerky, or you’ll be able to rehydrate it. To rehydrate, simply put it in a pan with just a little water and put it over the hearth. You can boil it, however that may draw out among the pure taste.

If you do boil it, you need to drink the broth left behind.  Otherwise, you’ll be able to simply put just a little water within the pan and canopy the pan to steam it. It won’t be as delicate this fashion, however far more flavorful. If correctly preserved, your meat ought to final you wherever from a number of weeks to a number of months whereas contemporary meat solely lasts a day or two.

Always Plan Ahead

As you’ll be able to see, there are a number of choices for meat preservation with out electrical energy. Keep in thoughts, our ancestors used to journey on ships for months at a time and their solely meals supply was meals that was preserved with out electrical energy.

Some individuals would hunt three seasons after which eat preserved meat all winter as a result of the climate was so harsh. The key’s to have a plan earlier than you go searching.

If you wait to determine the way to protect the meat till you have got a kill, many of the meat will go to waste. If you’re salting the meat, have the salt prepared. When you’re smoking meat, have the smoker rack constructed and have numerous firewood put aside.

The aim is to get the meat from the kill web site to the smoker as shortly as potential. This will guarantee you have got the best high quality preserved meat potential and that none of it goes dangerous within the course of.

If you need to actually be prepared, check out these strategies prematurely. Every 12 months after deer season, I’ve some scrap meat leftover that I take advantage of for attempting out preservation strategies. In most circumstances, I’ve been profitable and left with some tasty snacks for my household and me.

My son loves this time of 12 months as a result of he usually will get some jerky out of it. It can also be loads of enjoyable to check out these strategies with your loved ones. If you observe meat preservation and have a plan, you can be able to protect meat when it actually counts.

What’s your favourite meat preservation technique and why? Let us know within the feedback part!

Up Next:

  • How To Use Traditional Food Preservation Methods
  • Food Preservation: Importance And Basics
  • Foraging For Food: How To Identify Food Sources In The Wild

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