What is biltong?

Biltong is air-cured meat, consumed widely across most of Southern Africa. It is an Afrikaans word, comprising the Dutch words Bil (Buttock) and Tong (Strip). Why Dutch? To answer that we need to step back in history. Early African tribes hunted the savannah for small and large game. Game meat was then cured with salt and herbs before being sun-dried to preserve it.

Early European settlers such as the Dutch reached the African continent in 1652 and brought with them Vinegar, Black Pepper, Cloves, and Coriander which were added to salted meat and sun-dried to give us Biltong as we know it today.

A process honed in tradition

Across Southern Africa, biltong is more than just a snack, it is tradition, it is culture, it is a way of life. Our grandparents made biltong in rural Zimbabwe, the ingredients meat, salt, and the African sun. It was simple, authentic, and delicious. Necessity and creativity in equal amounts made with passion. This recipe was passed onto our parents who lived in the city, who made a modern interpretation of the biltong our grandparents made. This biltong was just as authentic, albeit with the addition of fragrant herbs, spices, and vinegar. The process had passion at the heart of it and the amazing Biltong was the taste of our childhood.

Having left Zimbabwe to settle in the United Kingdom in the late 1990s, the care package of biltong ran out very quickly, leading to a search for a taste of home in London. This is where the biltong journey in England began, using a large plastic tub, a desk fan for air circulation, and a light bulb for heat. The same necessity and creativity of generations earlier was at play. We manufacture our Biltong using the same processes, knowledge, and passion passed down the generations. iamcarnivore is our culinary inheritance which we share with you today.

Our Meat

We only use locally reared British beef to produce our Biltong. British Beef is amongst the best in the world and is produced to some of the highest welfare standards in the world. We believe in buying local produce and supporting British farmers, ensuring our amazing countryside looks as good as ever.

Our Recipes

We have kept true to the authentic African recipe of Salt, Black Pepper, and Coriander. We are constantly blending spices and ingredients to bring you new and interesting flavours to enjoy. Keep an eye on our social media threads or sign up for our newsletter for the latest news and offers.

Our Processes

When it comes to crafting the perfect Biltong, nothing does it quite like the African climate. Whilst we are not blessed with the perfect Biltong drying conditions here in the U.K., using climate-controlled drying cabinets, we can bring you the best possible Biltong.

Our Commitment

We are committed to bringing you authentic, great-tasting Biltong. We commit to using locally reared British beef which can be traced back to the farm. We combine good quality meat with herbs, spices and our expertise to bring you a quality product.

How we make our Biltong

It starts with good beef

We source locally reared British Angus beef to produce our Biltong. We use Silverside and Topside cuts, specially selected to have a good balance of fat marbling (fat equals flavour) and meat mass. These joints of meat are hand-sliced into thick steaks, run through a vinegar bath, and marinated in herbs and spices.

Curing

The meat marinates for 24hours, where the salt and spices kick-start the curing process. The meat is hung in temperature-controlled cabinets where it loses up to 50% of its mass as moisture is drawn from the centre of the meat. The meat darkens, dries, and turns into Biltong over 3 to 7 days.

Slicing - Packaging

Much like steak, Biltong can be served rare, medium or dry, depending on how long it has been hung for. We hand slice our Biltong when it is dry and pack it ready for you to enjoy. Once opened, eat your Biltong within 3 days...if it it lasts that long.