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Black Bear Steak

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I brought home a black bear steak today (a bit of an impulse, but excited to explore it). Any interesting recipes or cooking techniques?

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  1. Good luck with that . I was served roasted roasted black bear steak about 50 years ago, I will never forget the rancid, greasy mess of meat or the stench. Strongly suggest you cook it outdoors.

    4 Replies
    1. re: pikawicca

      Could this have been a freshness issue?

      1. re: jvanderh

        No.

      2. re: pikawicca

        autumn hunt,tasted and smelled just like everything it ate gone bad/spring bear WORSE,lean,dry and ammonia like," just off" after their long hybernation

        spring,small bear far enough south almost no hybernation factor OK ,not worth seeking out

        only familiar with large cuts,think shoulder,after a long braise cooked outdoors

        1. re: pikawicca

          A few years ago my father had the same reaction as you. Back then there were a lot of bears eating garbage at the city dumps in bear country and the bear meat reflected that. Turn the clock ahead 30 years (1990) and he said the bear ribs he was served were delicious. I've never heard of anybody cooking bear like steaks, only a slow braise. (I live in Minnesota. We have 30,000 black bear. They used to be an uncommon sight, now it is not unusual to hear about them wandering around the northern suburbs of the Twin Cities).

        2. cook it exactly as you would a brown bear steak, you will not even tell the difference lol just kidding . I have no ideas , but looking foward to hear what you do with it

          1. You should be aware that while trichinosis is virtually extinct in pork, it is reportedly still found in bear meat so you'll need to cook it to well done (actually, anything above 140F, or about Medium).

            3 Replies
            1. re: acgold7

              You wouldn't want to eat this stuff rare in any event (shudder).

              1. re: acgold7

                spot on about the trichinosis and bears,took out many an arctic explorer in trouble without the cooking fuel needed to make it safe to eat
                We have a shot for pigs to solve trichinosis,however poultry is a different story.Hence we eat much pork not brought to 135*/145*f ,not the case with our chickens or turkeys.
                Trichinosis is killed by freezing,don't remember number of days per pound but it isn't long.
                Was it labeled "previously frozen"?

                1. re: lcool

                  You need to freeze for at least a month and this technique works for pork but not game, according to the authorities who are supposed to know about this.

              2. When you say you brought it home does that mean you bought it in a store? If so I'm guessing it's farmed, and not wild? I imagine farmed bear would be much different than wild bear in terms of taste.

                9 Replies
                1. re: visciole

                  I've never heard of anyone farming bear.

                  1. re: pikawicca

                    It's being done to "milk" the gall bladder for bile,big in Asia.I like to think it isn't a business model in the USA,but you never know.

                    1. re: pikawicca

                      Bear farmers go through a LOT of sheepdogs every year.

                      1. re: GDSwamp

                        that explains the taste

                    2. re: visciole

                      Yes, I bought it at Savenors in Boston (apparently they are raised on "federally inspected and sustainable farms".)

                      Its not a big steak, but I am thinking about cutting it in two to try two different cooking techniques. I've read in a few places that the meat may be tough so I was thinking about pounding one piece out to create a cutlet, the other piece maybe a slow braise

                      1. re: redips

                        no culture willingly eats bear meat for a reason...

                        1. re: Chowrin

                          If no culture willingly eats bear meat for a reason, why do they eat it?

                          1. re: Chowrin

                            beg pardon?

                            Archaeology tells us that bear has been a food source since prehistoric times anywhere that bears roam, and it has been eaten by native North American tribes (across the continent) ever since...and many cultures *still* eat it (and more would if it weren't protected because of -- taadaa -- overhunting.)

                            The last bear meat I had was braised with onions and mushrooms like pork, and to be honest, I would have said it was pork if I hadn't known better. Pretty darned tasty.

                          2. re: redips

                            How did it come out? Did you enjoy it? Which cooking method worked better?

                        2. On another forum, I've seen a recommendation to cook it like chicken fried steak. Seems pretty smart to me, considering you need to cook it to a pretty solid medium at least and since some people describe bear meat as overwhelming or problematic from a texture standpoint. And anyway - who doesn't like chicken fried steak?

                          I have no personal experience cooking bear, though.

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: cowboyardee

                            There's an old joke about cooking it on a cedar plank, scraping the bear off the plank, and then eating the plank. They say that all good humor has a base in reality...

                            If you are determined not to braise it, I'd be tempted to try the chicken-fried steak route. With gravy. Lots of gravy. Gravy with a base from something other than bear.

                          2. We accepted a gift of wild bear steak last year. I was surprised at how sweet and tender it was. I have no idea why our steak was good compared to the experience of other posters. Perhaps this is the wrong forum to ask. DH just grilled it like he would any steak. I don't think we put it in a marinade.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: dfrostnh

                              I think bear is supposed to taste very different depending on the season and what it's been eating. The joke is that salmon tastes good, and bear tastes good, but bear that's been eating salmon doesn't taste good. So, a bear that's been eating nuts and berries probably tastes much better than one that's been eating meat, etc. You get the idea. I imagine an experienced outdoorsman/ hunter would know.

                            2. I've had bbq bear meat balls they were pretty good just cook well