It’s strange that jerky doesn’t exactly strike us as a snack. It makes sense if you think about it; a good serving of protein portioned out into between-meals bite-sizes. Perhaps it’s all the processing and preservatives that disqualifies, which was why Andrew Lim, who’s an underwater photographer by trade and a serial snacker by habit, created his own.
Lim’s drive to construct his own jerky came from the lack of healthy snack alternatives, combined with his dissatisfaction with the existing ones—leathery, shrivelled meats with a limited range of flavours; your teriyaki, black pepper and whathaveyous. After his handmade attempts surprised himself, he ran rounds of research and development to perfect the recipe.
“Friends who came over to my place loved it and wanted to buy it,” he shares. “From there, I saw the potential of selling high-quality jerky, with flavours that can’t be found in the market.” In other words, Lim saw an opportunity and took it.
A literal steak in a bag; each pack of jerky is made from approximately 230g of beef that’s marinated for over 12 hours in an all-natural herb and spice concoction, then slow cooked to tender perfection. Each bite shows for it, with a moist profile that easily absorbs the seasoning it’s accompanied by.
To answer to the local palette, the separate sachets come in mala, lemon ponzu and truffle. It’s great to be able to control the amount of flavour desired but better still is the novelty of shaking the bag. Please, that stoic expression isn’t fooling anyone. There’s a reason why shaker fries took off; everyone loves playing with their food.
The only drawback is the uneven distribution of powder, but even on their own, the texture of the jerky pieces provides a pleasant chew. The Happy Moo sold out within minutes of going live and Lim is already looking at expansion. So while bak kwa isn’t currently in the books (we asked), other meats are not out of the question. Three more flavours including tom yum and rendang will be added to the line-up.
And if you’re wondering about the disgruntled cartoon cow on the packaging, it’s a clap back to the excessively masculine designs on standard jerky. “I want to change people’s perspective of jerky—that it doesn’t have to taste so processed and tough,” Lim says. “Whether men [or] women, young or old, The Happy Moo is for everyone.”
The Happy Moo shaker jerky is available for purchase online.