There are many who love the leathery snack called beef jerky, but for those who don’t like its leathery texture, the Hawaiian cuisine has its very own version called Pipikaula. This is somewhat like a beef jerky but does not have a dried and leathery like texture. It is full of flavor and is slightly tender and moist more like a pastrami.
Pipikaula or also called as beef string or beef rope is a popular Hawaiian dish that is salted, seasoned, and dried beef. It is said that the old way of preparing this dish is by braiding raw beef like a string and hanging it until it dries, thus the term “beef string.”
Traditionally, it was eaten by Paniolos or the Hawaiian cowboys and can be prepared by broiling before being served. Aside from the original method of preparing the beef with salt and special traditional seasoning, the preparation was already influenced by Asian cooking as the beef strips are marinated in soy sauce.
Unlike the traditional method of just hanging the strips, it is now prepared by drying it under the sun. The traditional equipment that is still used by many is the screened box that keeps the beef safe from being exposed to flies and dust.
During a luau, Pipikaula is served as an appetizer or relish. For some who are preparing this kind of snack in the modern times, they can choose the kind of marinade they want to use just to get the flavor they want. Unlike plain soy sauce or salt, there are some who choose to add other herbs and spice with their marinade to give the beef meat more flavor and usually pound the beef with a mallet to make it tender.
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