It’s May-24 for me and all my fellow Canadian friends! This weekend is full of fireworks, cottage fun and best of all…Barbequing! Now unfortunately my boyfriend and I are stuck without a BBQ as our apartment says that’s a no-no buuuut I know my way around a George Foreman pretty well so I can still whip us some delicious noms. In particular, Andre is a huge burger fan, so I try to make us up turkey burgers on a weekly basis for his and my nomming pleasure :-D. I always use extra lean ground turkey as it’s not only super lean and a great alternative protein source to chicken breasts, but it also makes one heck of a yummy burger in no time at all. Turkey for the win! Although, despite the fact that I think that turkey is the best thing ever, sometimes I feel like I’m depriving my man of some good ol’fashioned dirty burgers. You know, the beefy kind. So I have been on the hunt for game meat for quite some time to try to find a leaner alternative to red meat that still has all of the great benefits of the moo-cow variety. Particularly, after trying bison at Chucks Burger Bar, I have been dying to find ground bison to make lil miss fitness freak style dirty burgers and guess what? I found some! Score one for me 😉
Amoungst my biking adventure yesterday, I happened to check into a place called Cumbrae’s Meats in Dundas, Hamilton only to jump up and down at the sight of lean ground bison in their freezers. Happy Day! Not only did they have bison, but they also had venison, boar, and other game varieties that I would love to try. They even had wagyu beef which was explained to me as the most humanely treated in beef Canadian. These lucky guys roam free, get the best feeds, and may even be massaged! Despite that last part sounding weird, in my opinion, this type of treatment should be standard for all animals that are raised for consumption purposes. Anyways, back on topic, this shop is A-mazing! All of their meat products come from animals that were free roaming, grass fed and raised without the use of yucky hormones and antibiotics. It’s a perfect place for a carnivorous foodie like myself looking for the best quality sources of protein! Although this type of quality food runs for a slightly higher price than I would like, due to the fact that I only eat a select amount of red meat, I think I will be able to handle the $ of these goodies every so often.
One thing I want to briefly discuss is why I’m so interested in game meat rather than just buying regular old beef….Isn’t beef good for you? Yes! Please do not interpret this post as me saying that red meat of any kind is bad for your health and should be avoided. No! Red meat definitely has it’s merits. It is a great source of complete protein (yay for muscle building food :-D), vitamins, and minerals. In particular, some of the important vitamins and minerals found in beef are:
- Vitamin B12, folate, thiamine and riboflavin…important for your nervous system and the metabolism of macronutrients (hello energy!)
- Vitamin K…for effective blood clotting
- Vitamin E…acts as an important antioxidant that protects cells from oxidative damage
- Iron…important for oxygen transport (hemoglobin)
- Zinc…important component of enzymes which along for bodily reactions to take place
So yes, beef is definitely good for you and should not be avoided based on the false idea that “it’s bad for you.” So you ask again, why don’t I eat it? Truth is, I do actually eat it, less than an anemic person should be, but I’m very picky about my meats (…or you could say I’m picky about my food in general, but that’s another post). I love finding lean meats that offer a lot of flavour and while you can find some cuts of beef that fall into that category (eye of round for example), there are so few of them that I grow bored. So not only did I want something a lil different from your typical beef, but I also wanted something that would be a great bang for my monnies. This is where where game meat comes in. Take bison for example, if we compare lean ground bison to lean ground beef you can see there are a few benefits of bison.
As you can see, bison has slightly more protein, more iron and less fat than your traditional ground beef. As I see it, this means more bang for your buck! Additionally, bison and many other game meats are always raised without the use of antibiotics, so that’s one less thing you have to worry about when stocking up!
Ok, once again, enough with my rambling, lets move on to the fun stuff, what did I do with my pretty package of bison that I bought yesterday? I made burgers of course! Check’em out, delicious, juicy and boyfriend approved.
Bison Burgers (Grainfree, Egg-free)
1 pound lean ground Bison meat
1 tsp each garlic powder, chili flakes, dried basil, dried oregano
4 tsp goat cheese
1/4 cup minced onion
Directions: Preheat your grilling surface (George Foreman anyone?). Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl just enough to evenly distribute everything (read: goat cheese). Form 4 equal sized patties and make a slight indentation in the middle of the patty. I am told this keeps the juices in… Toss those babies on your grill and cook for approximately 5 minutes per side or until your desired doneness. The George Foreman was a little weird and I eventually just closed the lid (:-o gasp squished patties) to complete their cooking, but they turned out juicy and delicious. Let the patties rest for a few minutes before dressin them up and serving. Enjoy!
While you can throw them on a bun or english muffin, if you’re anything like me, you like them nakeeeeed with all the extra goodies
I also decided that since we are on the topic of grilling I would share yet another recipe that I whipped up today with ya. These are my easy-peasy turkey breast and vegetable kabobs.
1 pound piece of boneless, skinless turkey breast
1/2 a large bell pepper
1/4-1/2 of an onion
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar (ACV)
4 tbsp regular mustard
2 tsp grainy dijon mustard
1 tsp each garlic powder, cumin, chili flakes, ms. Dash chicken seasoning
cracked black pepper to taste
Directions: Soak 4 large wooden skewers for at least 15 minutes. Combine all the of the marinade ingredients in a small bowl and set aside. Cut your turkey breast into fairly decent chunks so that you will have about 20 pieces (5 for each kabob). Chop your vegetables into large pieces. Now create your kabobs by adding your turkey (5 pieces each skewer) and vegetables in which ever order you would like. Once all of your skewers are made, place in a large plastic bag. Add the marinade and squish the bag to coat all four skewers. Refrigerate for at least an hour. Preheat your grilling surface and once that is heated toss your kabobs on there. Turn them every so often and cook until your desired doneness. ***You can just pierce one of the larger pieces of turkey and when it’s no longer pink inside, they are done. Enjoy!
I love kabobs because they are so versatile (….and they are BBQ’ed! :-P). You can add any veggies and proteins that you would like and they will always turn out great!
Well that’s all for me today friends as I’m biking off to my boyfriend’s improv show tonight to cap off my long weekend 😀
Anyone else from Canada? How did you celebrate your long weekend?
Favourite grill food? I love kabobs!
Ever tried game meat? Whats your favourite?
Everything’s better with a barbeque