Scottish Jerky

Last week I got invited along to the Scottish Speciality trade fair at the SECC to meet Brian Wilson, the man behind Scottish Jerky. Bobinson and Craig came along and we had a fine time wandering the isles while Brian was busy, everything from the finest Scottish fare to the tackiest tartan kiltie could be found if you looked.
The food hall was a wonder, rows of exhibitors with displays of wares to delight kitchen and rucksack alike.

We spotted that Brian was free and descended upon him. He had plates out with samples of all his flavours and any pretence of social etiquette went oot the windae as we snacked heartily and got the inside story.

Brian first tasted beef jerky on a road trip across Canada where it was sold from jars and handed over in a brown paper bag. He described (with the three of us nodding) the inescapable desire to stop for more once the bag was empty. He’d got it bad.
When he came home to North East Scotland he could only find some of the wee bags familiar to us in the american shop in Aberdeen and was frustrated at its rubbery saltiness compared to the fresh stuff he had tasted ocross the Atlantic. Such was his desire for quality savoury munchies that he soon formed a plan.
He did some market research, asking a friend “If I made jerky would you eat it?”, “I don’t know, what is it?” came the reply. Bouyed by this positve reaction he launched himself into nine long months of experimentation with process and flavouring until he walked out of his self induced beef armageddon with a product that he could be proud of, and more importantly pockets full of tasty jerky.
That was back in 2002 and since then then he has expanded his range of flavours and introduced venison jerky, also in various flavours.

It takes two whole days to prepare the meat, which is done from scratch, cutting the strips from the big chunk of coo, marinading and drying. Each flavour is done to personal taste not to generic marketplace expectation, and I think it shows. The jerky is much finer than the petrol station and supermarket packets, it melts in your mouth and the flavours are subtle and tasty. It has to be the most moreish snack on the planet. I carry jerky in my pack every trip and this is the best I’ve tried.
The nutritional value was discussed at length by Brian and Craig who know far more about such things than I (indeed the Scottish Jerky website has the info), but the message was clear; natural, no crap added and good for you. That’s enough for me.

And, you can try too. The first couple of comments that get posted with something amusing about beef in them get a packet of Scotlands finest, courtesy of www.scottishjerky.com

38 thoughts on “Scottish Jerky

  1. Of course as I’d like a pack jerky I thought I’d tell my most a-mooo-sing coo joke but Bobinson’s refered to it already. I’ll tell the udder one instead.

    What do you call a cow with two legs?

    Lean meat! ;o)

  2. Ah, reminds me of my favourite Christmas card, there’s a rather amusing cartoon of two deer doing it doggy style and the caption underneath simply read:
    “Christmas – it’s just two f**king deer!”

  3. I saw this a couple of days ago and I’m still wandering what it’s all about. It just seems to me to be yet another snack and a seemingly very expensive one. More so than even Honey Stinger bars, with similar amounts of protein, but lighter…. Is that it?

  4. Well, Beth, they’re very thin slices of dried meat (wild venison or beef) which pack a huge punch of protein. You just munch away at a couple of strips and it’s like having had a big sarnie. It looks expensive but a packet goes a long way on the hill. And in the summer it means you can take along non-perishable meat provisions that weigh very little. That’s what it is all about, I suppose, a good addition to lightweight backpacking.

  5. Aye, what Andy said.

    It’s just so much better than the traditional sugary horror that we’re supposed to carry.
    Taste, texture and nutrition, that fact that it’s hand made all adds up to a superior and more expensive product.

    Is it worth it? I’m afraid so, yes. As a snack or as something stirred into your dinner at camp it’s a winner.

  6. I’m just back from Ayr beach with the dugs there the now, and had nice bowl of homemade lentil soup.

    Jerky would’ve been a nice addition me thinks. You cant have much longer left of this cold eh?

  7. That’s the joy of jerky, it is what it is. A sausage is a gamble unless you can vouch for its source and you waht’s in it.
    I like the idea of cutting slices off of a sausage while sitting ouside the tent watching the sun go down.
    Must investigate the options…

  8. Was down at the new showroom a couple of weeks ago and stayed at The Eagle and Child in Staveley. Had their Celebration Sausage – a mix of Cumberland sausage and Stornaoway Black Pudding on mash – it was utterly, utterly gorgeous.

    Joe from Engebrets in Stornoway was in the shed last week and brought me a 2 foot Stornoway Black Pudding – now that’s how to negotiate for discount!

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