'Practice makes perfect': 45-year-old recipe secret to jerky success for Nampa deli

Posted at 5:03 PM, Apr 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-14 19:23:42-04

NAMPA, Idaho — Beef jerky is a nearly four billion dollar industry — but if all for anyone who has only ever tried is the national brands, you're missing out.

For one local deli, it's a 45-year-old recipe made every week by hand.

Every week, Old Country Sausage turns 100 pounds of top-round beef into jerky.

"I like jerky it's top round," said owner Lidia Heredea. "Clean the fat we slice it we marinate. We keep three days in marinade and we mix every day one time a day."

And at Old Country Sausage in Nampa, Benjamin and Lydia know practice makes perfect. When they bought Old Country Sausage, it came with a secret jerky recipe that's 45 years old— and you don't mess with perfection.

This certainly isn't pressed jerkey, or so thin you can see light through it — hunks of steak is more like it. Since the seasoning recipe is secret, we could only show the final mixture.

But seasoning is only half the battle.

"We wanna make fresh, we want to make every Monday and Saturday done, start all over," said Lidia.

The other half is a professional, computerized smoker. The cuts of meat are hung with care and spend three hours basking in a haze of cherry wood smoke.

Jerky and beef in general is more expensive these days, but in this case, paying a bit more for the best is worth it.

This weekend is Easter and Old Country Sausage says their jerky and Romanian sausage makes a great Easter basket stuffer.