My Treasure…My Pleasure

Authentic Kerala Cuisine & much more…

Unakka Irachi Olathiyathu(Dried beef/Beef Jerky Fry)

Posted by Annita on February 15, 2007

I’ve had enough of this dish,during my childhood days.I vaguely remember how my grandmother used to dry beef,fish etc at home,when she was healthy and young.Thin slices of beef marinated with salt and turmeric powder, are first dried well under the sun and then hung over the ‘aduppu‘(traditional stove in old Indian Kitchens,which is lit using firewood),where it is again dried in the heat and smoke.The whole process is time consuming and takes almost 3-4 weeks,but the end product was always worth the effort.This dried beef when fried, tasted divine when served with Kanji and Payaru Olathiyathu(Moong Dal Fry).

I’ve been craving for this dish for long,and so decided to give a try with Beef Jerky ,which is available in all local grocery stores.And believe me,it tasted almost similar to our good old Unakka Irachi Olathiyathu.

Dried Beef Fry

Dried Beef Fry

 So here i’m sharing with you my grandmother’s speciality dish …

Ingredients :

Dried Beef/Beef Jerky(Unakka Irachi) – 3 slices
Shallots (Kunjulli) sliced half – 5
Dried Red Chillies – 5-6
Curry leaves – a sprig
Coconut Oil – as needed


Cut the dried beef into small pieces.Heat little oil in a pan and shallow fry the beef slices until it is brown and crisp.Remove from heat and allow it to cool.To the same pan,add shallots,red chillies and curry leaves and fry for 2-3 minutes in low heat.Remove and keep aside.

Now pound all the ingredients together using a mortar-pestle.But here i’ve used my grinder for this purpose.This can be served with rice/Kanji.

The pounded beef prepared as above, can be again fried ,by adding meat masala,pepper powder etc.But i normally don’t prefer this.For me,it tastes better without these extra frying and masalas.

18 Responses to “Unakka Irachi Olathiyathu(Dried beef/Beef Jerky Fry)”

  1. RP said

    That looks great! I always look at those beef jerky packs with a suspicious eye…wondering what all chemicals they would have added to it. Good to see that you have tried it and approved it.

    Yeah even i was like that before..But i couldn’t control my craving and finally bought it…:))And we loved it..Try it out and let me know the result,ok

  2. Rg said

    This sounds good. Will try it out for sure. Thanks annita for this recipe.

    Try it out when u get a chance,Rg

  3. jisha said

    hi ..

    u tried it.i am from palai.palakkar always like this.Many times me and my husband were thinking abt this beef jerkey.pashe oru dairyam time i will buy this.bos u approved it na.thanks a lot.this is my hybby’s favorite one.

    No i’m not..But my amma is from kottayam.Try it out,jisha and let me know if u’ve liked it or not..

  4. Mishmash ! said

    Looks soooo yummy and I want to try it very badly but that beef jerkys never appealed to me much but the pic tempts me to ignore my doubts!!!! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

    Shn tastes almost similar to our Naadan dried beef..Only thing is taht you’ve to fry it well till crisp..

  5. jacob said

    nice. and i wish it would snow here in singapore:) it’s hot enough to cook and egg without fire.

  6. jacob said

    nice. and i wish it would snow here in singapore:) it’s hot enough to cook an egg without fire.

    wow..we’re eagerly waiting for summer,Jacob…

  7. InjiPennu said

    Ooooooooooooo ! I am drooling over here…..!!

    thanks Inji

  8. shaheen said

    wow! this is a must try for my beef crazy hubs!

  9. Anu Sony said

    Hii Annita,

    My mom had packed for me some dried beef when I came back after my vacation back home, and I had no idea how to cook it up into an edible dish, Thank you for the recipe…..

    The site is great… Congrats…

    Thanks for the comment,Anu and welcome to my blog

  10. Sig said

    Wow, I used to love the dried beef dish back home, never even thought of making it with beef jerky, you are a genious!I’m definitely trying this one out!

    BTW, I love your blog, great recipes and great presentation!

  11. vidya said

    Hi Anitha,
    I am a fan of you…i tried almost all your recipes everything came out fantastic
    i am afraid to say that this beef jerky fry didnt come thats was too sweet.
    thanks once again

    Vidya..i think you’ve used different kinda beef jerky..It is available in many different flavour like barbecued,hot,salsa flavour etc..
    Always look for the ingredients before u buy it..I prefer smoky peppery flavored jerky…

  12. vidya said

    thanks annita for your reply

    might be the problem with the beef jerky i brought
    i am in australia and i could find only that one in asian grocery

    thanking you again

  13. RP said

    What is the shelf life of this annita? Would it stay longer in the fridge?

    Ooh…i’m not sure of that dear…mine always finishes the same day itself…

  14. Sounds really yummy…Will try it soon

  15. Ian Evans said

    Thanks for all the comments that have been made; however, I was wondering how best to dry the beef…..I’ve recently tried some original ‘Unakka Irachi Olathiyath’ form South India, which contained garlic and curry leafs….it was/is extremely adictive……Added it to egg fried rice – wow!

  16. tess said


    we make unakka erachi differently….put the unakka erachi into mixie to make it thin…then saute the shallots,garlic curryleaves and add chilli n turmeric add teh erachi into it n fry on low flame…too good to taste

    Thank you Tess for the info..will definitely try in your way too…

  17. […] … njaanum oru bakshanam undakky, unnaka erachi Unakka Irachi Olathiyathu(Dried beef/Beef Jerky Fry) My Pleasure ningalkathentha ennu ariyvo ennu enikarilla .. pakshe pala-il ethu nalla popular aanu … beef […]

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