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All About Bison

All About Bison

 
 

Every stage of bison breeding, from the farm to the slaughterhouse, is subject to strict federally regulated controls to guarantee exceptional meat from animals that are raised on hormone-free and antibiotic-free feed.

 

There is a large variety of ingredients and seasonings that pair well with bison; anything that pairs well with beef will also work well with bison. Try herbs and spices such as tarragon, basil, rosemary, thyme, oregano, chervil, parsley, mustard, fresh-ground peppercorns or garlic.


Cooking Methods for Bison

Roasted bison

Tender cuts of meat are cooked in a moderately hot oven, 140°C (275°F), in an open roasting pan without any added liquid. Medium tender cuts, such as eye of round and cross-rib roast, are cooked covered with a little added liquid.

For tender cuts of meat:

1Pre-heat oven and place meat in an open roasting pan.

2Coat meat with a little oil.

3Cook until desired degree of doneness.

For medium-tender cuts:

1First, sear the meat on all sides for 8 to 10 minutes prior to roasting.

2Remove meat from pan and set aside.

3Deglaze pan with broth, about 250 ml (1 cup), over medium heat.

4Bring to a boil and cook one minute.

5Return meat to pan, cover and cook in the oven until desired degree of doneness.

6Midway through cooking, insert meat thermometer into the fleshiest part of the meat.


Grilled Bison: The meat is cooked rapidly over medium heat.

1Marinate steaks for 4 to 8 hours—even tender cuts like filet, rib-eye, T-bone, boneless rib.

2On the stovetop, in the oven or on the barbecue, sear the meat over high heat, then lower heat to medium.

3Cook for 6 to 10 minutes depending on the thickness of the steak, turning only once using tongs, not a fork, to avoid piercing the meat.

Sautéed or stir-fried bison: Strips of meat are cooked rapidly over medium heat in a lightly oiled frying pan or wok.

4Season the meat with herbs.

5In a lightly oiled frying pan or wok, brown meat over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes.


Braised bison: The meat is cooked slowly, over low heat, in a covered casserole with liquid and vegetables.

1Pre-heat oven to 140°C (275°F).

2Coat the meat with flour and dry mustard.

3Brown the meat in a small amount of canola oil.

4Pour enough liquid to cover the roast halfway.

5Add aromatic vegetables, onions, leeks, carrots and a bouquet garni.

6Cover and cook for approximately 2 hours.

Stewed bison and bison cooked in sauce: The meat is cooked slowly in a covered casserole with a large amount of liquid and aromatic vegetables.

1Coat cubes of meat with seasoned flour.

2Brown cubes in a small quantity of oil.

3Add aromatic vegetables and spices such as pepper, thyme, bay leaf and juniper berry.

4Add enough liquid to cover the meat completely.

5Cover and simmer over medium heat.


Bison Cuts and Cooking Methods

Different cuts of bison meat are classified the same way as beef and come from the fore and hind-quarters of the animal. Leg, loin, rib and shoulder all provide very tender and medium tender cuts.

 

This delicious meat can be eaten rare or pink, except for the mechanically tenderized (French style) cuts and when ground. Bison meat is also processed into sausages, salamis, cretons, pâtés and terrines. The offals, including liver, heart and tongue, are also available.


Tips and advice for cooking bison

  • The lean, dark red meat of bison is not very marbled, though white filaments can be seen in the meat of the female bison. Because the meat is very lean, it cooks very quickly so, for maximum moistness, cooking time should always be short.
  • Cook bison meat until it reaches an internal temperature 10 degrees less than the desired temperature, because it will continue to cook even after it has been removed from heat.
  • Avoid cooking meat that is still frozen or partially frozen. Cooking meat that is completely defrosted ensures uniform cooking.
  • Tender or medium tender cuts suggested for roasting: Filet mignon, Rib steak, Medallion, Rib eye, T-bone, Boneless rib, Sirloin, Wing steak, Cross-rib, Eye of round, Inside round, Outside round, Sirloin tip, Flap (Bavette), Flank
  • Tender cuts suggested for grilling: Filet mignon, Rib steak, Medallion, Rib eye, Strip loin, T-Bone, Boneless rib, Sirloin, Brochette cubes
  • Tender or medium tender cuts suggested for sautéing or pan-frying: Filet mignon, Rib steak, Medallion, Rib eye, T-Bone, Boneless rib steak, Sirloin, Wing steak, Cross-rib, Inside round, Outside round, Sirloin tip, Eye of round
  • Less tender cuts suggested for braising: Blade, Cross-rib, Stewing cubes, Shank
  • Less tender cuts suggested for stewing and cooking in sauce: Shoulder (roasts), Stewing cubes, Shank

Expert tip

For best results, it is most important to select the best cut of meat for the chosen recipe. When in doubt, consult your Metro butcher; he will be happy to assist you!


How to know when cooked bison is done

When cooking bison, check for these internal temperatures to make sure your meat has reached the desired degree of doneness.

Rare meatMedium pink meatWell-done meatGround meat
Cook to: 60˚C (140˚F)Cook to: 63˚C (145˚F)Cook to: 70˚C (160˚F)Cook to: 70˚C (160˚F)

Portions chart

Calculate 150 gramsPer portion

Nutritional value

Bison meat is low in fat and cholesterol, and rich in protein, iron and zinc.

Storage

Fresh, vacuum-packed cuts of bison will keep for 20 to 30 days from the packaging date. Frozen bison will keep in the freezer for up to one year.



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