Alligator Jerky sounds like a death-defying game foolish kids in Florida might play. On the contrary, this seasoned and dried meat treat is an ideal way to put the bite on America’s largest reptile. Tasters report that Alligator Jerky reminds them of “lean smokey bacon”, which is half the battle won right there! It also can come in handy as a recipe ingredient for obscure delights like Gatored Green Beans.
(image via: Weaponry Listens to Love)
Just in case you’re a reptile lover of the gourmand variety, Crocodile Jerky is also readily available. In Fact, it’s one of the “Big Three” meat jerkies from Australia. Presumably, it’s delicious with a little Vegemite.
Yaks roam the world’s highest mountain meadows in search of forage so you know they’re tough critters. Yak Jerky, not so much, especially when it’s made from yaks farmed and ranched in more forgiving climes… like that of New Mexico. Regardless, if you’re hiking a difficult trail and the munchies are slowing you down, go ahead and yak it up with a slab, slice or stick of quality Yak Jerky!
(image via: Big Bang Studio)
You can find Yak Jerky at your local supermarket or at a roadside stand in Tibet – is the world getting smaller or what? Quality control concerns give domestic producers a leg up on the competition, however, so give that some consideration next time you put some yak in your pack.
Cowboys riding the range might hesitate a tad before sampling a little of the cayuse that brought ’em, so to speak, but Horse Jerky has a place in the spectrum of dried meat cuisine nonetheless.
(image via: Larval Metamorphosis)
Due to cultural prejudices, Horse Jerky in the USA is mainly relegated to the field of dog treats, snacks and chews. Overseas, though, it’s a different story. Take the bag of “Charqui Equino” above, which hails from Chile in South America. Trivia buffs should note that the word “jerky” is derived from ch’arki, a Quechua (Inca) word which means “to burn meat”.
Now hold on there, Japan-bashers and Sea Shepherds, other nations are active (and legal) whalers and all of them process some portion of their catch into jerky… what else are you going to do with it, really? While Whale Jerky might not endear you to your tree-hugging, naturalist trail buddies, at least you can say you’re supporting traditional cultural activities – and be sure you’re chewing on some Icelandic “djorki” as you espouse.
(image via: Evil Tracy)
Japan is the big player in the Whale Jerky game, if truth be told, and the packaging used is often cute and creepy – no real surprise there. The English copy on the bag of Maruko brand Whale Jerky above is almost too precious to be real: “It is the jerky of the whale which it made with traditional taste and new technology. Please enjoy the taste of the whale which I miss you, and is new.” Aww… now who could refuse a pitch like that? Pass the Whale Jerky… and a tissue.
(image via: TokyoMango)
“Zombie Jerky” doesn’t actually come from zombies but eating it could possibly turn you into one. These flattened chunks of dried beef from Japan have been dyed blue to enhance the zombie effect. As for taste, they’re said to exude a peppery flavor reminiscent of BRAAII… er, pepper.
Exotic jerky aficionados (you know who you are) can find finding unusual jerkies an unusually difficult endeavor though as with other things, the journey is often more enjoyable than the destination. Short of bagging your own odd critter and preparing jerky the old fashioned way, you can always nip on out to Alien Fresh Jerky or the Beef Jerky Outlet in Garland, Texas, which stocks the full line of Buffalo Bob’s brand jerkies… that just might include buffalo (but hopefully not Bob).