The average American eats nearly 200 pounds of meat in yearâ€”mostly in the form of beef, pork, poultry and fish.
But in recent years, game and other specialty meats have begun to work their way onto our plates, as reported by James Raiswell, writing for AskMen.com. The good news is, many of these hearty meats are better for us.
The difference is, animals like buffalo and elk are strictly grass fed, and they aren’t loaded with the antibiotics or growth hormones we’ve all heard about. Plus, they’re higher in protein but lower in cholesterol.
Here are Raiswell’s recommendations for alternative meats.
â‹… Bison. Lean and rich-tasting red meat. Fairly coarse texture. Excellent substitute for beef, containing half the calories and fat. Be careful not to overcook. Cook slowly at low temperature. Serve medium rare. You can find bison at many local farms. Look for bison or buffalo at your favorite farmers market. Bison is actually becoming fairly mainstream; you can find bison burgers in many Ruby Tuesday locations, at Ted’s Montana Grill, and lots of independent restaurants.
â‹… Elk. Taste is much like beef, but with a gamey richness and sweetness. Very lean, dark meat with a coarse grain. Preparation: same as with bison. An increasing number of farmers in the U.S. and Canada are raising elk. You may be able to get it from your local butcher.
â‹… Kangaroo. OK, this one might be a tough sell for many Americans, but Aussies have been enjoying it for many years. Has a fine-grained texture that’s similar to liver when cooked. It’s gamey like venison but holds up fine to roasting or grilling. Serve medium rare or rare. A little harder to find, you may have to order it online. Don’t worry, it won’t hop off your plate.
â‹… Pheasant. A classic game bird, prized for its plumage and its rich dark meat. Distinctly gamey flavor. Pairs well with a full-bodied red wine.
Variety is a good thing, right? And since these meats are generally healthier, why not give them a try.
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