In this article, we're going to walk you through the process of preparing an ostrich steak starting from choosing the cut to achieving a tantalizing sear.
Choosing the Right Cut of Ostrich Steak
Ostrich meat is usually divided into three cuts: the fillet, fan filet and fan fillet with the bone. Each cut offers a texture and flavor giving you the opportunity to pick the one that suits your taste preferences.
The fillet is considered the leanest cut of ostrich steak. It's a elongated muscle that runs along the birds back. Due to its tenderness the fillet is best suited for cooking methods like grilling or pan searing. This cut is perfect for those who enjoy a melt in your mouth texture and a mild flavor.
The fan filet, also known as the fan steak is an slightly more cut. It comes from the thigh. Provides a robust flavor. The fan filet is versatile. Can be cooked using methods such as grilling, roasting or braising. It's a choice for those who prefer a taste and a more substantial texture.
Lastly we have the fan fillet on the bone which includes part of the thigh bone as indicated by its name. This particular cut adds a depth of flavor due to the presence of bone marrow.
The ideal way to prepare it is by utilizing gentle cooking techniques like braising or roasting. This allows the flavorsome richness of the bone marrow to permeate the meat resulting in an juicy dining experience. The bone in fan fillet is particularly suited for those who desire an delectable meal.
Preparing and Marinating Ostrich Steak
Before you start cooking it's important to remove any fat or silver skin from the meat. Once the steak is trimmed it's time to marinate it. Marinating serves two purposes: adding flavor and tenderizing the meat.
When it comes to marinating ostrich steak, it is best to use a marinade that enhances its taste without overpowering it. A simple marinade made with olive oil, minced garlic, fresh herbs and a dash of lemon juice does wonders in bringing out the steaks flavors.
To marinate the ostrich steak place it in a dish or a resealable plastic bag. Pour the marinade over the meat making sure it covers every part. Let the steak marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes but for maximum flavor infusion leaving it for up to 24 hours is preferable. Remember to flip the steak so that the marinade spreads evenly.
Marinating not only adds flavor but also helps in tenderize the meat. The natural enzymes found in ingredients like citrus juices or yogurt assist in breaking down muscle fibers resulting in a tender and juicy steak. The longer you marinate your ostrich steak the tender it will become. However be careful not to over marinate as this can cause the meat to become mushy and lose its texture.
Cooking Methods for Ostrich Steak
First make sure to preheat your grill to medium-high heat and apply some oil on the grates to prevent the steak from sticking. Next place the steak directly on the grill. Cook it for 3-4 minutes on each side if you prefer a medium rare doneness level. Adjust the cooking time according to your preference. It's important to use a meat thermometer to check that the internal temperature reaches 130°F (54°C) for a rare result. Lastly allow the steak to rest for a minutes before slicing it. This resting period helps redistribute the juices throughout the meat.
Begin by preheating a cast iron skillet or a sturdy pan over medium-high heat. Add a touch of oil or clarified butter to the pan. Then gently place the steak into the pan. Allow it to cook for 3-4 minutes on each side or until you achieve your level of doneness. Remember to let the steak rest before slicing it to maintain its succulence.
Preheat your oven to 425°F (220°C). Place the steak on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Cook it for around 10-12 minutes. Until the inside reaches a temperature of 130°F (54°C) to achieve a medium rare doneness. Remember to let the steak rest before slicing it so that it remains juicy and moist.
Sous vide cooking
Take the steak. Seal it in a bag using a vacuum sealing technique. Place the sealed bag in a water bath, at a temperature for a period of time. This method, known as vide cooking guarantees that the steak is evenly cooked to perfection. Once the steak is done cooking quickly sear it on a skillet or grill to create a crust.
By following these instructions you'll be able to enjoy cooked and delicious steak, with ease.
Tips for Cooking the Perfect Ostrich Steak
To truly master the art of cooking ostrich steak, here are some additional tips to ensure a perfect result every time:
- Let the steak come to room temperature before cooking. This allows for more even cooking and ensures that the steak cooks more quickly.
- Season the steak just before cooking to prevent the salt from drawing out moisture. A sprinkle of salt and pepper on each side is all you need to enhance the natural flavors.
- Use a high smoke point oil, such as avocado oil or clarified butter, to prevent the steak from sticking to the grill or pan.
- Avoid piercing the steak with a fork while cooking, as this can cause the juices to escape and result in a dry steak. Instead, use tongs or a spatula to handle the steak.
- Let the steak rest for at least 5 minutes after cooking to allow the juices to redistribute. This will ensure a moist and flavorful steak.
- Experiment with different herbs and spices in your marinade to create unique flavor profiles. Ostrich steak pairs well with rosemary, thyme, garlic, and various citrus fruits.
- Don't be afraid to try different cooking methods and techniques to find your favorite way of preparing ostrich steak. Each method offers its own distinct advantages and flavors.
Common Mistakes to Avoid When Cooking Ostrich Steak
One of the errors people make is cooking the steak for too long. Ostrich meat is naturally lean, it can easily become dry if overcooked. To avoid this, it is important to monitor the temperature of the steak using a meat thermometer and remove it from the heat when it reaches your desired level of doneness. Remember that the steak will continue to cook while resting so it's better to take it off the heat a bit earlier.
Another mistake you should avoid is using heat when cooking ostrich steak. While a hot grill or pan is necessary for achieving a sear be careful not to burn the meat. If the heat is too high, you can risk burning the outside while leaving the meat undercooked. Aim for heat and adjust accordingly based on your cooking method and equipment.
Additionally make sure not to overcrowd your surface when searing or grilling ostrich steak. If there are steaks in one batch it can lower the temperature and prevent them from developing that delicious crust we all love. If needed cook batches at a time giving each piece space to cook evenly.
Lastly, do not skip the resting step after cooking. Allowing the steak to rest for a few minutes before slicing allows the juices to redistribute and ensures a moist and flavorful result. If you cut into the steak early it might cause the juices to escape which can lead to a moist and enjoyable eating experience.
Ostrich Steak Recipes and Variations
For a classic preparation, you can try grilling an ostrich steak and serving it with a garlic and herb butter. Start by seasoning the steak, with salt and pepper then grill it to your desired level of doneness.
While the steak is cooking you can prepare a compound butter by combining butter with garlic chopped fresh herbs and a squeeze of lemon juice. Once the steak is cooked to perfection simply place a pat of the garlic and herb butter on top. Let it melt over the meat. Complete your meal by serving it with potatoes and a side salad for a dining experience.
You ca also consider making a spicy Asian inspired ostrich stir fry instead. Begin by slicing the steak against the grain and marinating it in a mixture of soy sauce, ginger, garlic and just a touch of honey.
Next heat up either a wok or a large skillet over heat and stir fry the sliced steak with vibrant vegetables such as bell peppers, snow peas and carrots. Add in some sauce made from paste soy sauce and a splash of rice vinegar for extra flavor. Serve this delicious stir fry over jasmine rice for a tasty dish that will satisfy your cravings.