For winter and present use, cut the beef into sizable pieces, sprinkle a little salt on the bottom of the barrel only, then pack your beef without salting it, and when packed, pour over it a brine made by dissolving six pounds of salt for each one hundred pounds of meal in just enough cold water to sufficiently cover it when well-weighted. This beef can be cut and fried as nice as fresh meat for a long time, and is just right for boiling also. You can freshen it nearly as nice as pork for frying purposes, or it can be parboiled, the water turned off, and a stew made of it.
By using more salt, it soon loses its freshness, and the juices are drawn off by the salt. In about three weeks (maybe less), such pieces as are intended for drying may be taken out of the brine and hung up, and is improved by soaking overnight to relieve the salt from the outside.
This is all right for winter and drying purposes, but if any is left until warm weather, drain off the brine, put salt among what is left of the meat and cover with a brine made as follows:
For every 100 pounds of beef, use seven pounds of salt dissolved in water enough to well cover it, and weight it down closely.
Another way to cure beef. First, thoroughly rub salt into the meat in bulk and let it remain for twenty-four hours to draw off the blood. Then, let drain, cutting into pieces as desired, and pack carefully. Have ready a pickle made as follows: For every 100 pounds of beef, use seven pounds of salt, one ounce each of saltpetre and cayenne; molasses, one quart, and soft water, eight gallons; boil and skim well, and when cold pour it over the beef. Boiling and skimming cleanses the brine, while the cayenne and saltpetre improves the flavor and helps to preserve it.