That’s right…tomorrow is National Jerky Day! Now before you get turned off by your preconceived notions, I’m not talking about Slim Jims here. Think about jerky’s origins with the Natives and first settlers exploring the wide open frontier. Refrigeration wasn’t an option so meat that wasn’t eaten on the spot had to be cured and dried in the sun. Artificial additives and unpronounceable lab-created preservatives and dyes didn’t exist. It was just simple ingredients like salt, sugar, and plenty of solar heat.
Fast forward to today where dried meats outsell other popular salty snacks, including popcorn and pretzels. Naturally packed with protein, jerky keeps you satiated between meals; but since it’s surprisingly low in fat, calories and carbs, it won’t sabotage a healthy diet,” said Jeff LeFever, director of marketing for Jack Link’s® Beef Jerky, the No. 1 U.S. meat snack brand. “Plus, jerky tastes great. There’s no snack more deserving of its own special day.”
Oh, and it’s not just the classic beef that’s dried for snacking…today there are more than 100 varieties made from premium cuts of turkey, chicken and pork as well as wild game like buffalo, venison, and even denizens of the deep like Ahi tuna. Perhaps our ancestors were onto something before technological innovation brought us protein shakes and meal replacement bars.
Photo courtesy of the Wall Street Journal