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Saturday, March 15, 2008

Dinner Tonight:Ostrich Fillet w/ Braised Endives

Ostrich. The other red meat. Yes cows everywhere are rejoicing over the other red meat yielded by this large, rather funny looking flightless bird. Why are they rejoicing? Maybe because Ostrich meat has less fat and cholesterol than beef. Not only that it has less fat and cholesterol than skinless chicken. In a growing health conscious society I can see in the future Ostrich steaks being a staple at your neighborhood steak house. I can also imagine some loud mouth at Yankee stadium yelling out 'Get your Ostrich Dogs here' while enjoying a ball game with the family. Maybe I am reaching a little bit, but if you have the opportunity perhaps you should give a cow a reprieve for one night and give Ostrich meat a chance.

The flavor and texture is similar to beef but it does have a slight gamy aftertaste. It's versatile like beef and I don't see why it couldn't be subsituted for beef in most dishes. You do have to show caution when preparing Ostrich though because it doesn't cook like beef.

Since it is much leaner then beef(any probably most other meats) be sure not to overcook it because it will dry out fast. Marinate the meat for to ensure maximum juiciness. Also because of Ostrich's high Iron content the meat well remain more red then beef even when cooked through. Cooking time for Ostrich should be the same time as beef and should be cooked to medium.

I made a simple marinade for a 4oz portion of Ostrich tonight that I purchased vacuum packed from supermarket. It consisted of:

2 tblspns reduced sodium soy sauce
1tpsn grated fresh ginger
1 tpsn Sesame Oil
Dash of rice cooking wine
Dash Orange Juice
Marinate for one hour prior to cooking.

Add a tablespoon of oil to a hot skillet and add the meat and the marinade to the skillet. Cook about three minutes on each side and serve. Keep in mind I am working with precut thin fillet.

If you are able to get your hands on a thicker Ostrich steak you should cook it to an internal temperature of 150 degrees

For a side I made some braised endives from a recipe I lifted from

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