Oh my goodness, you guys, these mock epic bites are YUMMY! I had been working on perfecting pemmican so that you would have a tasty and nutritious travel snack but it didn’t turn out all that well. I dried saskatoons and added them to powdered dried meat with tallow and a bit of honey but the saskatoons made the pemmican quite gritty. However these little packets of deliciousness, these mock epic bites, fit the bill perfectly.
Historically pemmican was made by some of our First Nations peoples as a portable food for long journeys. Powdered dried meat was combined with powdered dried berries and solid fat and would keep for months and even years.
On a trip to Portland this past week I was in a restaurant called the Cultured Caveman and bought some Epic Bites. These are sort of a cross between what I imagine pemmican would taste like and a pliable jerky. When I got home I combined some spices, grass fed ground beef, currants and smoke in the form of a smoked sea salt and the resulting mock epic bites are sensational.
You will need to use either a dehydrator or the oven to turn these into morsels of goodness. I used an oven for these ones.
Delicious and nutritious travel snacks.
10 minPrep Time
3 hrCook Time
3 hr, 10 Total Time
1 pound ground beef (grass fed if possible)
1/2 cup raisins or currants (I used currants)
1 teaspoon smoked sea salt USD
1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
Process the dried fruit and spices in a food processor USD until well mixed.
Pull the ground beef apart in smallish chunks and add to the food processor CAD.
Process on low until mixed.
Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper, add the meat mixture and pat it down a bit, cover with another sheet of parchment paper and roll out the meat mixture into a rectangle until it is thin and even (1/8-1/4 inch thick).
Remove the top layer of parchment paper.
Score the meat in squares about an inch by an inch.
Preheat oven to 225 degrees F.
Put the cookie sheet with the scored meat into the oven and cook at 225 degrees F for 30 minutes.
Carefully remove the cookie sheet and drain the fat from the meat.
Reduce the heat to 170 degrees F.
Separate the scored meat squares and remove the parchment paper.
Turn the bites over.
Dehydrate at 170 degrees F for one hour.
Drain if necessary, flip the bites and return to the oven.
Repeat until the bites are dry but somewhat pliable, flipping each time. Two hours at 170 degrees F for very thin bites and 3 hours at 170 degrees F for thicker bites.
I didn't use my Excalibur dehydrator USD or Excalibur dehydrator CAD for these but I think that it would work quite well. Maybe cook them in the oven at 225 degrees F for 30 minutes and then transfer them to the dehydrator for 3-5 hours depending on thickness?
You can vary the amount of ground meat from 1 pound up to about 1 1/3 pounds.
This makes approximately one pound of mock epic bites from one pound of ground meat plus dried fruit and spices.
I froze these as soon as I made them. I think, because these are mostly dried, that they should last more than a week in the fridge and more than 24 hours without refrigeration. They are not as dry as a jerky would be so it is difficult to be precise as to storage times.
As seen on Phoenix Helix Recipe Roundtable #134