There are many misnomers out there about bison being a very difficult meat to cook. Fact is, a good quality piece of bison is far from impossible...in fact, with just a few considerations, bison meat can be cooked to perfection by the novice cook.
The two tips about cooking bison boil down to these: LOW and SLOW. If you remember this about cooking bison, you can't ruin it!
Bison is lean and that is great for your health and physique! Accordingly, it is important to remember that in the kitchen. Bison meat has less fat and 30% less water than other red meats. On the average it takes a third less time to cook than other red meats. Try not to cook it to well done or overly done ! Here are other tips that you should consider when cooking bison:
Although tender cuts (tenderloin, loin steaks, rib steaks) do not require it, for best results marinate steaks in marinade of your choice before cooking. Grill over a hot flame only to sear and seal. Transfer to the cool side of the grill for 6 to 15 minutes depending on thickness, turning frequently. Do not cook past medium 160 degrees F (70 degrees C). Bison meat has a tendency to continue to cook even when it has been removed from heat.
For Char-Broiled Bison Steak - Rub your favorite cut of steak with a combination of a little garlic salt, cooking oil, ground black pepper and lemon juice. The lemon will make it tangy, and gives a zippy flavor
* Do not use a fork to turn steaks, this punctures the meat allowing the juices to escape. Lesser quality bison steaks are not recommended for grilling unless they have been marinated.
* Steaks recommended for grilling/barbecuing include Rib Eyes, T-Bones, and New York Strips. Cooking time is important in order not to overcook your steaks. Total cooking time will depend on the thickness of the steaks: 1" thick-rare: 6-8 min med: 10-12 min 11/2" thick - rare: 10-12 min med: 14-18 min 2" thick - rare: 14-20 min med: 20-25 min.
For tenderloin, loin roasts, rib roasts, top sirloin and sirloin butt, preheat oven to 275 degrees F (140degrees C). Place bison in a shallow roasting pan. Brush lightly with oil. Roast until meat is about 10 degrees F below the desired temperature. It is recommended that it be cooked to rare (130 degrees F, 55 degrees C) or medium rare (160 degrees F, 70 degrees C). Remove meat from the oven and cover lightly with foil. The meat will rise 10 degrees F while sitting. After 10 to 20 minutes, enjoy!
For roasts from lower cuts (sirloin tip, cross rib, inside round, outside round flat and eye of round), brown roast at 500 degrees F (260 degrees C) for 30 minutes, reduce heat to 275 degrees F (140 degrees C) and add 250 to 500 ml. liquid to the pan, cover pan or cover roast with foil, and cook to medium rare (145 degrees F, 63 degrees C) or no more than medium (160 degrees F, 70 degrees C). Slice roast at right angles to the grain, or for thin roasts, cut diagonally across the grain.
For Prime Rib and Loin Roasts:
(suggested minimum size: 4½ lb. for prime rib roasts, 3 lb. for loin.)
· Remove roast from refrigerator 30 minutes prior to preparation.
· Turn on top broiler for oven. Place roast fat side up on a rack in an open roasting pan. Deeply insert meat thermometer. Put roast 2 to 3 inches under the broiler, and broil for about 5 minutes or until top fat browns.
· Reduce heat to 275°F, place roast in the middle of the oven and cook until thermometer registers 135°F to 140°F for rare, or 145°F to 150°F for medium rare. Once desired doneness is reached remove roast from oven. Longer cooking is not recommended for these cuts.
· Remove thermometer from roast. Cover roast loosely with aluminium foil and set aside. Let stand for 20 minutes before carving. (Internal roast temperature will rise marginally at this stage but level of doneness will not be affected.)
· While roast is standing, make gravy by first blending 2 to 3 tbsp flour with drippings in roast pan. Over medium heat, add enough stock or water from boiled vegetables (usually 2 to 3 cups) and whisk continuously at low boil until gravy thickens.
· Remove aluminium foil from roast. Carve roast to desired thickness and serve with gravy and vegetables.
Bison patties do not shrink as regular beef hamburger does. They also take less time to cook. If the grill or pan is too hot the patty may stick. Bison burger is foolproof when added to recipes such as chili or meatloaf.
You may use bison in any recipe that calls for beef -- there are no limits! Everything from burgers on the grill, to marinated steaks, meatloaf, spaghetti sauce, stir frys, barbeques, hot dishes & casseroles -- even tacos can be made with bison! It is a wonderfully versatile, tasty meat.
The main rule of thumb is that it takes about 1/3 less cooking time on lower heat than recipes using beef. As for stews and chili, the meat will cook faster, but there isn't much adjusting needed because it is such a slow cooking process. If you think your meat may become too tender, par-boil or partially pre-cook the vegetables before adding to your recipe.