Ostrich and Emu
Preparation, Uses, & Tips
Defrost frozen ostrich or emu in the refrigerator. Steaks, fans, and fillets take about 24 hours; roasts two to three days, depending on the size. Ostrich and emu are low-fat meats, so care must be taken to make sure they don’t dry out during cooking.
Ostrich and emu meat should be cooked to an internal temperature between 150°F (65.5°C) for rare meat, and 160°F (71°C) for medium.
Wash roast under cold water, pat dry, and place on a rack above a shallow roasting pan with fat side up. Insert meat thermometer deep into the meat. Roast at 350°F (180°C) until desired internal temperature is reached.
Wash steaks quickly under cold water, pat dry, and place steaks or burgers on a rack above a shallow roasting pan. Adjust the oven rack so meat is 3 inches (7.6cm) from the burner for thin cuts, 4 inches (10cm) for thick cuts. Turn with a fork or spatula after four to five minutes. Cook until desired internal temperature is reached, about four to six minutes per side.
Heat a heavy skillet over medium heat until very hot. Add a little butter or oil, then place steak or burgers in the skillet. Sear until brown on each side. Pour off drippings and turn the meat frequently until done.
Wash ostrich and emu meat quickly under cold water, pat dry, cut into thin strips, and dry again. Use tender cuts or tough cuts sliced across the grain. Heat a wok or heavy skillet until very hot; add oil, then the slices of ostrich or emu, in small batches. Stir until done, about three to five minutes, depending on quantity.
Wash the roast and pat dry. Heat a heavy skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat until very hot. Add oil or butter and brown roast on all sides. When all meat is browned, add cooking liquid and cover tightly with a lid. Cook in the over at 325°F (160°C) or on the stovetop over low heat until ostrich or emu is tender, about 30 minutes per pound (454g). Add more cooking liquid if needed.
Wash meat, pat dry, and cut tougher cuts into cubes. Brown in oil if desired. Then put in a Dutch oven and cover with liquid and herbs, spices, and vegetables. Cook in the oven at 325°F (160°C), or on the stovetop over low heat until ostrich or emu is tender, about 1 1/2 hours.
For roasts, place meat on a microwave-safe roasting rack over a dish, fat side down. Cook at high for 6 to 8 minutes, then on medium for 7 to 14 minutes per pound (454g). Rotate dish halfway through cooking. Let stand 15 minutes before cutting. For burgers, arrange meat on a greased baking dish and cook ten minutes per pound (454g) on high. Turn halfway through.
Place steaks or burgers on a prepared grill with rack about 8 inches (about 20cm) from the heat source. Grill, turning frequently, for about 1 to 1 1/4 hours or until fork tender. Homemade or bottled barbecue sauce (or other glazes) may be brushed on meat during last 10 to 20 minutes of grilling time.
To test the temperature, place your palms above the coals or heat source at cooking level. If you have to remove your hands after two seconds, the temperature is hot; after three seconds, medium hot; and after four seconds, medium. More than four seconds indicates the grill has not reached cooking temperature.
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The information presented in the Food Guide is for informational purposes only and was created by a team of US–registered dietitians and food experts. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements, making dietary changes, or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2015.