Dried food is the longest lasting food in the game, but can only be prepared in cold, dry weather. It can nearly last for a whole year outside of a cellar. With the freezing temperatures of winter and a cellar to store it in, dried meat can last for several years.
In order to make dried meat or dried fish, you need a wall (or a kota Framework, or the side of a shelter), tying equipment and obviously meat or fish. Dried food can be made only in the winter and early spring. As with smoked meat, the most efficient use of your cords would be to use 1 cord and 19 cuts at a time.