People have hunted bears since prehistoric times for meat and wool. Bears are prevalent in the Northern Hemisphere and partially in the Southern. Due to its keen sense of smell, large size, cruel disposition, and secrecy, the bear has always been considered a favorite hunter target.
Bear meat is rather peculiar meat that not everyone likes. However, there are a lot of bear meat enthusiasts. They come up with marvelous recipes! Moreover, numerous bear meat recipes are easy to make. For the bear meat to acquire the necessary softness, juiciness, and noble taste, it is pre-soaked in a marinade of wine, spices, and herbs — four days if the pieces are extensive, at least 15 hours if the meat is cut into small slices.
The best parts of a bear are the hips and legs. In terms of taste, bear meat is unique one: it has a sweet taste and a fat, coarse texture. Nowadays, the meat of black bears is usually consumed. Whites are the primary food source of the Eskimos. Polar bear meat is served baked, boiled in stews, or soup. This meat is never eaten raw, and the liver is seldom used for food since it has a high content of vitamin A and is highly toxic.
The black bear eating is a popular trend today. The taste of bear meat depends on the bear’s diet, on its gender, and age. It is best to marinate adult bear meat in orange juice, vinegar, or red wine. This will make it softer. Many foodies believe that bear meat tastes like chicken and pork. However, as a rule, it contains more fat than pork.
Bear meat can be stewed for 2-3 hours with onions, carrots, and bay leaves, after cutting into small pieces. It is better to serve the dish with a potato side dish. You can also boil the bear meat and serve it with different sauces. Mustard, paprika, or grated horseradish will add spice to the meat. Not only that but also excellent jellied meat is made from bear meat. It should be boiled as usual, but you can add pork legs to make it «grip».
It is better not to serve bear meat separately: spices or garnishes mask the specific taste. Pickled cucumbers, onions, and garlic will add piquancy. Lingonberries, cheese, mushrooms, and quince will add a unique aroma. The hams of the bear can be smoked or salted. Salting meat takes about a month and can be stored for a long time in brine before cooking.
On the Grill
Grilling a bear is a great way to enjoy delicious meat from such an unusual prey. So, it would be best if you first prepared the carcass:
- Cut off the back straps and leave the top half of the ribs attached.
- Use a knife to separate the backstrap from the spine.
- Using a saw, separate the ribs from the spine, trim off the lower (abdomen) half of the ribs, leaving the back strap attached to the rib half-rack.
Next — cooking with spices. The meat should be fried on both sides on the grill, smearing it with all the spices. It would help if you used a cast-iron plate or a hot grill. It is worth starting with meat on direct heat at the highest possible temperature that the grill allows. Not only that, but it is then essential to reduce the grill temperature to about 225 ℉ so that the meat is deep-roasted inside. After the temperature has dropped, you can remove the meat from the grill and let it brew. The dish is served on a special tray decorated with spruce branches, fresh herbs, and seasonal berries.
You can cut the strap between the ribs to create a black bear lollipop. However, this is not the only way to roast a black bear. There are other recipes as well.
Cut the meat into pieces of about 80-100 g each, place in an enamel pan. Grate the carrots on a fine grater. Finely chop the onion and greens. Crush the garlic. Add chopped vegetables and herbs to the meat, put spices, pour wine and vinegar, mix the marinade with the meat and keep in the cold for at least four days. Then put the marinated meat together with pieces of bacon on a greased and heated cast-iron pan and fry over the fire until tender.
For barbecue, you need to take fresh meat, not frozen. In addition, it is necessary to remove the fat altogether and ensure that the meat is well done. Cook the bear meat over charcoal or dry skillet:
- Salt the meat, leave to marinate for a couple of days.
- Make a 150g sauce—water, ketchup, tomato juice, vinegar, sugar, salt, and any spices. Put on fire and cook for fifteen minutes.
- Place the meat in the sauce and cook in the oven until tender (about two hours).
Irish-Style Black Bear
There are delicious recipes for corned beef lovers too! This type of meat can also be easily salted and tastes just as good as any other type of meat. This cooking method is tongue breaking and also safe. Corning style of bear meat is nutritious and free of health hazards. Moreover, everyone can cook it!
Why do many people like to corn meat? The first is the ease and flexibility of this recipe. When cooking black bears with this bear steak recipe, you don’t have to cut off large pieces of meat like on a barbecue or grill. This method even offers a minimal amount of meat waste.
Now to the point:
- Freeze the hind limbs.
- Then cut 1½ to 2 inches of bone across the entire back.
- Wrap them up and send them back to the freezer.
Seasonings are the best way to reveal all the gustatory richness of bear meat. You can choose from canned and pickled salt, low-fat spices, pickling seasonings, and a little pepper. It is also worth pre-making a simple brine and immersing the roast in it for 48 hours, changing once a day. After that, it is essential to rinse the meat and send it to a crockpot with freshwater. In a few hours, a delicious and simple dinner will be ready!
Smoked Black Bear Sticks
This method requires some effort and special tools. However, the result is a marvelous, very low-waste, fast, light, and delicious dish. For cooking, you will need:
- meat grinder;
- minced sausage;
- smokehouse or pellet grill.
First, you need to work off the bear. You need to remove all quarters, ribs, and any other meat from it, cut it into pieces. Further, these pieces should be frozen so that the meat does not deteriorate.
The next stage is cooking sausage. It is worth grinding the previously thawed pieces of meat into minced meat. Then you can add seasoning. After that, you have to wrap the minced meat in a shell and make sausages. The last item is smoking. Small sausages smoke relatively quickly, so incredible black bear sausages will be on the table as soon as possible!
Bear meat is a rare treat on any table. At the same time, one cannot fail to note its benefits. Bear meat strengthens the immune system and has a beneficial effect on the health of the heart and vascular system. Its taste is close to pork, but everyone notes its extraordinary nutritional value — from a small piece of bear meat, you can get enough for a long time.
If you follow the recipe correctly, bear meat makes delicious and nutritious meals. After using these cooking tips, you can discover is bear meat good for you and treat your loved ones with tasty snacks. You can choose a culinary recipe of your choice and prepare an exotic dinner with it.
Bear meat can be stewed, fried, or baked. At the same time, dishes can be varied. Everyone will find a treat to their liking.
It takes a long time to cook the meat — usually, it will take 2-3 hours to cook the bear meat. But it’s worth it! Juicy bear meat will diversify the set of familiar meat dishes and will delight your guests.