It's dried meat flavoured with herbs and spices
The word biltong is from the Dutch bil (“rump”) and tong (“strip” or “tongue”).
Don’t worry, it’s not made from “tongue”! We use the best cuts of silverside or topside beef (although it can be made from game meat e.g. kudu, ostrich, venison or impala). We cut the meat into strips, marinate in cider vinegar, salts and spices and then air dry.
This creates our famous biltong, a high protein, low fat, incredibly addictive snack.
Biltong's History (The facts)
Bitong originates from the indigenous people of South Africa, they needed a way of preserving meat to avoid it going to waste after making a kill. They learned the methods of dried meat from the Dutch settlers (hence the origin of the name) and they would use salt and vinegar to cure the meat and then hang the strips over tree branches to dry in the sun. After a couple of days the Biltong would be perfectly preserved and ready to eat, or carry with them on their journey as the process allowed the meat to last for months.
The Biltong vs Jerky debate
Both biltong and jerky are forms of dried meat. The main difference is in their preparation. Biltong is marinated in vinegar and spices and air dried which adds texture and flavour. Jerky is traditionally dried without vinegar, and cooked first. Jerky is normally thinner meat, biltong strips are cut much thicker.
At the biltong farm, we believe biltong wins hands-down! Biltong, with it’s superior texture and richness of flavour leaves the jerky “high and dry”.