Last time we brought you an exotic meat to cook, alligator, we must admit it was primarily for shock value. However, this time is the real deal: Ostrich can be, and in some ways already is, a serious contender as an alternative source of red meat. Why? Well, because not only is it a healthy source of protein, but it's delicious as well.
On the health front, the American Heart Association recommends ostrich as a source of lean meat since it is "very low in total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium." The recommended 6-ounce serving contains just 4.8 grams total fat, 0 grams saturated fat, 162 milligrams cholesterol, and 132 milligrams sodium, according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. That's comparable to the same-size serving of skinless chicken breast, which has 6 grams total fat, 1.8 grams saturated fat, 144 milligrams cholesterol, and 126 milligrams sodium. But ostrich is far more flavorful than any skinless chicken breast, no matter how juicy and perfectly cooked.
That's because ostrich is rich in flavor, more like a red meat than any poultry. It does not taste like chicken; in fact, it tastes similar to beef. This key difference is important to understand. It is not your typical bird. The Daily Meal's video producer Ali Rosen recently had a chance to get up close and personal with some of these lovely birds during a recent trip to Cape Point, just outside of Cape Town, South Africa, where wild ostriches can be found naturally roaming by the coastline. She says that "ostriches are really scary" and that "I think the thing that's amazing [about ostriches] is that when you're next to them you realize just how powerful they are. You usually think of birds [that we eat] as really small. And when you want something like a burger, you want it to come from something meaty. But ostriches have legs as big as people's."
An ostrich, then, is not your typical bird. We've even heard them characterized them as "horse-birds," which is pretty apt considering they are raced for sport in certain parts of the world. A typical ostrich is a sturdy animal; ranging from 7 to 9 feet tall, they would tower over most people, and in fact, they are the world's largest bird. They are able to achieve a top speed of 43 miles per hour and can sprint for 31 miles before running out of steam; one stride spans anywhere between 10 to 16 feet. Ostriches weigh anywhere between 220 to 350 pounds, and can kill people with a blow from one of their powerful legs. Ostriches are found in many parts of Africa, but are also being raised in other parts of the world, including in the Middle East, where their subcutaneous oil is prized for its use in medicine and cosmetics, and their sharp claws are useful for polishing diamonds. Here in the United States, much like in the Middle East, ostrich is catching on as a popular alternative to red meat. (Photo courtesy of Daniel Gourvitch)
Cook ostrich fillet
Ostrich fillet is naturally low in fat & delicious – if you know how to cook it correctly!
Ostrich meat is delicious, naturally low-fat and those available from Woolworths are free-range to boot – no routine antibiotics or growth hormones are administered to the animals. Here are some handy tips on how to cook ostrich fillet.
Best Ostrich Recipes - RecipesSee Recipe
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C.&hellipSee Recipe
To make the biltong spice, pla&hellipSee Recipe
Ostrich steaks with grapefruit-and-cucumber salad
Season ostrich steaks with oli&hellip
Brown rice nasi goreng
Heat the sesame oil in a pan o&hellip
Roast ostrich fillet with mushroom marmaladeSee Recipe
Seared ostrich with griddled pap
Dry fry the bacon rashers in a&hellipSee Recipe
Zaatar-Spiced Ostrich Steaks with Tahini Sauce
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Pa&hellip
Ostrich carpaccio with fresh apple, candy-striped beetroot and kohlrabi salad
Mix the crushed peppercorns an&hellipSee Recipe
Ostrich meatballs in Burmese curry sauce with cucumber-and-coconut salad
Mix the ostrich mince, parsley&hellipSee Recipe
Ostrich fillet bombs
Pan-fried ostrich steaks with ginger and gooseberries
Gently heat the olive oil with&hellip
Ostrich lasagneSee Recipe
Ostrich tartare with roast garlic and caper foam, Parmesan soil and deep-fried quail egg in a rock salt dome
Mix the ostrich, horseradish c&hellipSee Recipe
Ostrich neck in rich red wine sauce
Place the ostrich neck in a la&hellip
Heat oven to 220°C. Heat oli&hellipSee Recipe
Peri-peri ostrich steak with crusty French loaf
Baked ostrich meatballs with turnip, potato and celery mash
Preheat the oven to 190°C.In &hellipSee Recipe
Ostrich Steaks – Red meat from a bird?
Ostrich meat doesn’t taste like other birds. It’s meat is red like venison and the taste is similar to prime beef. Other’s say it tastes like veal. You have to try it for yourself and come to your own conclusions. We would like to hear what you have to say about the taste of ostrich.
The meat comes in all of the cuts that beef comes in, including steaks and burgers, as well as ground meat. Many people order their ostrich meat online, since it’s not as widely available at supermarkets as your standard red meats.
Try ostrich on the grill or seared and juicy in a hot cast iron skillet. Check out this ostrich steak recipe, with wine pairings.
Cooking Ostrich Meat
Ostrich is a healthy and tasty substitute for any red or white meat. Use it in your favourite recipes. It absorbs seasonings and marinates rapidly. You can buy ostrich meat online here .
Since ostrich meat is so lean, you need to be careful not to overcook it. The recommended preparation or this red meat is medium or medium-rare – just like a premium steak.
Ostrich steak ready to eat
Ostrich is even lower in calories, cholesterol and fat than skinless chicken and turkey, while remaining high in iron and protein.
The Diabetes Association approves and recommends ostrich as a leading source of protein It has also been approved by the American and British Heart Associations.
What’s more, due to ostrich’s ideal pH balance, the meat does not attract harmful bacteria like E.coli or salmonella. Tasty and healthy!
The meat is very easy to prepare.
Never cook ostrich more than to medium. It should be red in the center when you cut into it. Use low temperature and moisture when roasting. Ideal internal temperature when a roast is ready is 160 ° F. Ostrich meat has no bones and no shrinkage. We suggest that you brown both sides over high heat (broil, fry, BBQ) and then continue cooking over lower heat until you get it the way you like it. (Rare to Medium recommended).
Most ground meats recipes advise you to drain the fat when sautéing ground meat, but ostrich ground meat is so lean there is no fat to drain. Ground Ostrich , can be used in any recipe calling for beef. Make chilli, spaghetti sauce, delicious lasagna, or use it for any casserole.
Our ground ostrich meat is conveniently packaged in 1 lb. units.
Most Popular Ostrich Recipes
Ostrich recipes in SA have been passed on from generation to generation in the country. Most families have their favourite Ostrich steak recipe, Ostrich egg recipe, and roasted Ostrich recipe readily available for when the craving comes knocking. Some might say that “it’s a South African thing”. Now that you’re out of the country, perhaps it is time that you too had your own favourite Ostrich recipe, to pass on to friends and colleagues, but also to have a reminiscent taste of home at hand. Let’s jump right in to our top 3 Ostrich recipes.
Ostrich Steak Recipe – Red Wine, Mushroom & Beetroot
This one will get your mouth watering before you even cook it! This recipe provides a generous serving for 4 people.
- 200g Ostrich fillets x 4
- Salt and pepper for seasoning
- 1 tablespoon of oil
- 15g of butter
- 20 g of butter (separate from the 15g)
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- 4 large black mushrooms
- 1 handful of button mushrooms
- 2 medium onions (cut into quarters)
- 1 teaspoon of dried thyme seasoning
- 1 tablespoon of dried rosemary
- 1 grated garlic clove (you can also use crushed garlic)
- 1 and ½ cups of red wine (choose your favourite)
- 1 cup of chicken stock
- 1 tablespoon of brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon of tomato paste
- 250g of cooked beetroot (cut this into blocks)
Whipping up this dish is easier than you might think.
- Caramelize the onions over medium heat in the 1 tablespoon of oil and 15g of butter. This takes around 10 minutes.
- Add the thyme, rosemary, salt, pepper and mushrooms and fry for another 10 minutes.
- Add the red wine and garlic and allow to bubble.
- Add the chicken stock and tomato paste to the mix, and simmer. It should reduce by half and thicken in consistency.
- Add the 20g of butter and let it melt in.
- Then, sieve the mix and add the beetroot blocks to the sieved liquid. Set this to one side. Don’t throw the big pieces of onion and big mushrooms away – keep these for later.
- In a pan, heat the oil and fry the Ostrich steaks to medium. Season the meat according to your own preferences.
- Add the onions and mushrooms to this and fry along with the steak. Then, remove the steak from the pan and let it rest on a cutting board for around 10 minutes.
- Add the wine mixture to the steak juices in the pan and mix it in.
- Serve the steak on a plate with some of the onion and mushroom pieces on top. Pour the wine sauce over the steak and place the beetroot blocks on top or around the steak.
Scrambled Ostrich Egg Recipe
If you are lucky enough to get your hands on an entire Ostrich egg, you are in for a treat. The concept of scrambled eggs is certainly taken up a notch with Ostrich egg! One Ostrich egg can comfortably feed 8 to 10 people. Remember that a quarter cup of Ostrich egg is the equivalent of 1 chicken egg. This recipe is almost fine dining and serves 3 or 4.
- ¾ cup of Ostrich egg (whisked)
- 2 tablespoons of coconut cream (or regular milk if you wish)
- ¼ teaspoon of mustard powder
- ¼ teaspoon of ground turmeric
- ½ teaspoon of dry parsley
- Handful of fresh basil
- Handful of fresh rocket
- Pepper and salt to taste
- 2 tablespoons of cooking oil
If you want to keep the eggshell, make sure that you knock or carefully drill a hole in the bottom of the eggshell and drain the egg out. If you have no plans for the shell, break it as per normal.
- Heat the oil in a frying pan.
- While it is heating, whisk the coconut cream, mustard powder and turmeric into the Ostrich egg and add the salt and pepper.
- Pour the egg mix into the pan and allow it to simmer gently.
- Once it starts to catch on the bottom of the pan, add the dry parsley, fresh basil, and fresh rocket.
- Using a spatula or wooden spoon, gently disrupt the egg cooking at odd intervals to get nice fluffy scramble chunks.
- When there is no longer any liquid egg in the pan, it’s cooked and ready to serve.
- Serve this with crisp hot toast or warm fresh rolls and tomato sauce.
Roasted Ostrich Recipe – Fillet with Mushroom Marmalade
This is a firm favourite for a cold winter’s night or a breezy summer day. Prepare to enjoy an undeniable more-ish experience! This recipe serves 4.
- 450g of Ostrich fillet
- 1 tablespoon of butter
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- ½ cup of chicken stock
- 1 tablespoon of sherry (you can use port or red wine too)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- You can steam some rice and spinach to serve.
For the mushroom marmalade you need:
- 400g of chopped mushrooms (can be mixed varieties)
- 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon of brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons of sherry or red wine.
- 3 tablespoons of butter
- 1 grated garlic clove
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
- Brown the Ostrich fillet in a frying pan using the oil and butter combined.
- Remove the fillet from the frying pan and place them in a roasting pan.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Roast at 180 degrees Celsius for 5 to 6 minutes.
- Remove the fillet from the oven and allow it to rest for 10 minutes on a wooden cutting board.
To Make Mushroom Marmalade:
- Fry mushrooms in a pan on high heat in the butter – they should turn golden brown.
- Stir the garlic and sugar into the mixture and cook until the sugar forms syrup.
- Stir the vinegar and sherry/wine into the pan and cook on high until the mushrooms appear glazed and sticky. Season to taste.
Slice the steak thinly and pour the mushroom marmalade over it. Serve this with rice and baby spinach leaves.
FinGlobal: Cross border financial specialists
Now that we have shared our favourite Ostrich recipes with you, we only have one more to share: the recipe to financial and tax emigration success. At FinGlobal, we have simplified the tax emigration process. We have also helped thousands of South Africans abroad cash in their retirement annuities, so that they can make the most of their retirement overseas. For assistance with your financial emigration, all you need to do is contact us.
Ostrich Cooking Tips
Author Sayersbrook Bison Ranch
Ostrich has a dark pinkish meat and a very subtle flavor. It cooks quickly and will be wasted if you try you drown it in strong flavor. Fry it with lots of butter and use a sauce such as bechamel or light wine sauce.
The meat continues to cook a bit after being removed from the heat source, that's why it's important not to cook it past rare to medium-rare. Letting it "rest" before slicing gives the meat time to reabsorb the juices that would otherwise be lost. When you cut it and eat it the meat will be juicier and tastier.
Rub the ostrich steak with a mixture of garlic, pepper, oil and let it sit in the fridge for up to 5 hours.
Take it out of the refrigerator and pat dry with a paper towel
Below are two marinades for Ostrich steak. If you wish to marinate the Ostrich Steaks with the marinades (marinade #1 or #2) instead of using a salt and pepper rub, then make a fresh marinade when adding the marinade to the skillet after you have marinated the steaks in the fridge.
Marinade for Ostrich steak #1
- 2 ostrich steaks
- 2 tbs. soy sauce
- 1 tsp. ginger grated
- 1 tbs. sesame Oil
- splash of rice wine
- Splash of orange juice or pineapple juice
Marinade for Ostrich steak #2
- 2 ostrich steaks
- splash of wine
- cup of chicken stock
- 2 garlic cloves chopped
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 Rosemary sprigs
- 2 Thyme sprigs
- 2 tbsp oil
- squeeze of lemon
- Heat a skillet to hot, add a little olive oil or butter.
- Cook steaks for 2 ½ minutes per side
- Remove and place on a plate. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes
- Make a fresh marinade and add the marinade to the hot skillet
- cook uncovered to the right consistency, not to watery but not too thick
- Slice steaks across the grain
- Pour sauce over the steaks
- Serve with Rice or potatoes and vegetables.
Wine is a great marinade for ostrich. Whether you use white, red or a rose it makes the meat tender and tasty without overpowering the ostrich. If you don't have wine, use a vinaigrette. Mixing together balsamic vinegar, olive oil, garlic and lemon juice makes for a good marinade too.
Ostrich is very lean. It tastes very much like steak as opposed to fowl. It's a bit on the bland side so it's a good idea to use a light gravy or sauce.
Best Ostrich Recipes - Recipes
Burgers should cook 4 minutes
per side only.
Use a hot iron skillet for proper heat levels. Heat the pan to hot. Add a little olive oil or butter (and perhaps some green peppercorns--see the recipe above). Cook for 2 minutes on that side. Turn, cover, and turn off the heat. The steak will continue to cook for another 4-5 minutes. /> BROILING
Pre-heat the oven at the Broil setting. Place your fillet 3-4 inches from the broiler. Cook 2-3 minutes per side.
Keep in mind that Ostrich meats contain little or no fat. Overcooking can happen in just a minute and will just cook away the juices.
Use a hot iron skillet for proper heat levels. Heat the pan to hot. Add a little olive oil or butter. (and perhaps some green peppercorns--see the recipe below). Cook for 2 minutes on that side. Turn, cover, and turn off the heat, The steak will continue to cook for another 4-5 minutes.
Salsa Verde - A piquant green sauce, as the name suggests. Fresh herbal taste in an emulsion of olive oil.
Italian flat-leaf parsley forms the base, any herbs may be used along .
1 cup Italian leaf parsley leaves, loosely packed
1 TBS. fresh oregano leaves
1 t. fresh rosemary leaves
1 TBS. fresh lemon thyme leaves
6 anchovies, drained
2 large cloves garlic, smashed
3 large pimento stuffed green olives
4 green onions, cut into 1/2" pieces
1 TBS. red wine vinegar
1 TBS. fresh lemon juice
1 TBS. capers, drained
Black pepper, freshly ground
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Place all the ingredients, except oil, in a food processor and pulse until evenly chopped. With motor running, add the olive oil to emulsify the sauce. Serve with fillet.
Beef Tenderloin "Dog" with Corn Relish
1-cup fresh corn kernels (from 2 ears)
1/4 Cup finely diced red bell pepper
2 tablespoons finely diced red onion
2 tablespoons finely diced celery
¼ cup cider vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
Salt and freshly ground pepper
3 tablespoons canola oil
½ teaspoon minced garlic
½ teaspoon sweet paprika
½ teaspoon dry mustard
¼ Teaspoon cayenne pepper
One package of four, 2 oz. tenderloin strips
- Light a grill bring a small saucepan of water to boil. Add the corn and cook for 2 minuets. Drain and cool under running water. Shake off the excess water and pat the kernels dry. Transfer to a bowl and add the bell pepper. Onion and celery.
- In the same saucepan. Heat the vinegar, sugar and a generous pinch each of salt and pepper just until the sugar dissolves. Pour the vinegar over the vegetables and refrigerate the corn relish until chilled.
- In a bowl, stir the oil, garlic, paprika, mustard and cayenne season generously with salt and pepper. Using a very sharp knife, quarter the tenderloin lengthwise to form 4 long &ldquodogs.&rdquo Rub with half of the seasoned oil. Brush the cut sides of the sides of the bread with the remaining seasoned oil.
- Grill the stips over high heat, turning occasionally for about 4 minutes per side. Grill the baguette, oiled side down, until lightly toasted. Serve the beef tenderloin strip on the toasted baguette, topped generously with the corn relish.
Four giant chunks (that can really be cut in half), grill your kabobs on a screwer interchanging the kabob pieces with red onion, yellow pepper, tomatoes, or any veggies. Or go tropical with fruits, pineapple, challots, pears and apples.
Place 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 with Braised Endives.
2 Tbs. reduced sodium soy sauce
1 tsp. grated fresh ginger
1 tps. Sesame Oil
Dash of rice cooking wine
Dash Orange or Pineapple Juice
Marinate for one hour prior to cooking
Braised Endives - Put the butter in a nice heavy bottomed frying pan and heat until it is frothing. Slice the endives in half lengthwise and add them to the pan, keeping the heat relatively high so that the butter browns (but does not burn!) and the edges of the endive caramelize. After a few minutes, when you really think you are in danger of burning the butter and/or the endives, turn down the heat to low and pour in the chicken broth. Sprinkle the sugar and lemon juice over the endives and cover loosely. Simmer for 20 minutes or until tender. Salt and pepper to taste.
3-4 Belgian endives (enough to fill your frying pan snugly when sliced in half lengthwise)
3-4 Tbs butter
1 cup chicken broth
2 Tbs (roughly) lemon juice
1 scant tsp sugar
salt and pepper to taste
- Cook the meat and onion in a little stock over medium heat until brown, set aside.
- Add all remaining ingredients
- Simmer for an hour and fold in the meat
- Serve on a bed of rice with seasonal vegetables
- 500 g ostrich meat for stewing
- 2 onions, peeled and chopped
- 375 ml (1 1/2 cups) beef stock
- 5 ml (1t) salt
- pinch of ground black pepper
- 5 ml (1t) dried oregano OR
- 15 ml (1T) freshly chopped oregano
- 125 g dried apricots, chopped
- 125g prunes, pitted and chopped
- 15 ml (1T) soya sauce
- 30 ml (2T) wine vinegar
- Protein (g): 29
- Fat (g): 12
- Carbohydrates (CHO): 46
- Energy (Kj): 1241
Ostrich meat is low in fat, with 100g of cooked ostrich providing the same small amount of fat as a skinless, filleted chicken breast - beef providing double this amount and lamb almost 3 times as much fat. It is also low in saturated fat, which we know contributes to increased blood cholesterol levels. Ostrich, like most other fresh meat cuts, provides a wonderful source of protein and iron. The type of iron is about 5 - 10 times more available for absorption that the form found in plants. Iron is beneficial in the prevention of some anaemia's.
From "The Lean Aubergine" by Karen Protheroe and Moira van der Linde
Southwestern Style Ravioli with Mango Salsa.
For Salsa, combine the following:
1 cup peeled cubed mango
1 cup cubed seeded tomato
1/2 cup finely chopped green onion
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
2 TBS. olive oil
2 TBS fresh lime juice
1 jalopeÒo pepper, seeded and minced fine
1/2 t. salt
Fresh ground pepper
(Salsa may be prepared 2 hours ahead)
Italian Organic Herb Ravioli with Chunky Tomato Sauce
- Chop 3 cloves garlic finely
- Sautée in 2 TBS. Olive Oil
- Add one can DICED tomatoes (14.5 oz.)
- Add 5-6 large basil leaves chopped fine
- Simmer 10 minutes
Cranberry-Pecan Ravioli with Bourbon Creme Sauce.
1 cup Milk
1 TBS. Cornstarch
2 TBS. Butter
1/4 t. salt
Several turns fresh ground pepper
1-2 TBS. Bourbon
How to Cook Fiddleheads
Fiddleheads sometimes have a brown paper husk, much like you’d see on tomatillos or spruce tips.
Remove the husk and soak in cold water. You’ll want to loosen the fiddleheads a bit to get out soil. It’s best to change the water a few times to be safe.
Cooking fiddleheads is very easy. But you do need to know how long to cook fiddleheads.
Health Canada says to boil 15 minutes or steam for 10-12 minutes until tender but still crisp. If you boil them don’t keep the water as soup stock, it is VERY bitter.
Most fiddlehead recipes often start with a boil or steam to ensure there is little risk.
- 1/2 pound fiddlehead ferns
- Kosher salt
- 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon dill seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 2 allspice berries
- 1 garlic clove, smashed
Place fiddlehead ferns in a large bowl of cold water and wash well. Rub away any brown chaff and trim cut ends.
Add two tablespoons of salt to two quarts of water in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Add fiddlehead ferns and cook for 10 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water.
Combine vinegar, 1/2 cup water, and 1 teaspoon salt in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Place spices and garlic cloves into the bottom of a prepared pint jar. Pack fiddlehead ferns into the jar and add hot pickling liquid to cover.
Wipe rim, apply lid and ring and process in a small boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes. Remove jar from canner and let cool on a folded kitchen towel. When jar is cool enough to handle, remove ring and check seal.
Sealed jars can be stored in the pantry for up to one year. Unsealed jars should be refrigerated and used promptly. Let these pickles age for at least a week before eating.
Biltong is a South African classic. It is an air-cured meat marinated in vinegar and spices. And it’s one of the main treats that South Africans abroad often miss – so here, for those pining for a taste from home, is a delicious biltong recipe…
Many different types of meat are used to make biltong, ranging from beef through game meats and ostrich. Try this simple easy biltong recipe or watch SuzelleDIY’s video below for her step by step guide!
- 2 kg meat
- 100 ml brown sugar
- 30 ml coarse salt
- 15ml bicarbonate soda (this softens the meat)
- 125ml crushed coriander seeds
- 125 ml red wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp cracked black pepper
- 1 tbles paprika or chilli flakes
- Use a good quality meat like silverside or topside
- Slice the meat, with the grain into 1cm thick x 2cm wide strips and about 20cm in length and rub thoroughly with the vinegar.
- Mix the salt, sugar, crushed coriander seeds, bicarbarbonate of soda, black pepper and paprika together in a bowl to form a rubbing mixture.
- Rub the spice mixture into the pieces of meat.
- Take a glass or stainless steel container and layer the meat, making sure the the thicker pieces are at the bottom.
- Cover the container with cling film in fridge or commercial refrigerator for about 12 hrs mixing every couple of hours so that the meat flavours evenly.
- Hang up to dry in a well ventilated spot.
- Biltong Machines for home use work very well.
- Drying time is about 4-5 days, depending on the weather, and your personal preference.