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Really need some eggspert input on cooking a bear shoulder!

KeeferKeefer Posts: 119
edited March 2014 in EggHead Forum
How in the world do I get myself into these messes? A men's community service group I belong to is sponsoring a 'Wild Game Night' in an effort to attract new members. There will be turkey, rabbit, raccoon, squirrel and deer prepared every way imaginable. There will even be alligator. One of the guys commented that it would be good if someone brought some bear meat. A friend of my wife volunteered a bear shoulder that her cousin had in the freezer. Of course my wife took it - and here I am contemplating how to prepare the bear shoulder is such a way that it would be edible. I would like to cook it on the egg. My first inclination is to put Bad Byron's on it and cook it low and slow like a pork butt. I have a lot of questions though. First, what internal temp is considered done for bear meat? Second, how will it take smoke - nicely like pork or way easy to overdo - like poultry? Third, can I expect it to taste good, a little gamey or just plain bad? Does anybody have any honest experience cooking bear meat? Especially on a BGE? I would really welcome your input here guys and gals.
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Comments

  • Looking forward to see what the group comes up with! How much does a bear shoulder weigh?
    Lovin' my Large Egg since May 2012 (Richmond, VA) ... and makin' cookbooks at http://familycookbookproject.com
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  • KeeferKeefer Posts: 119
    I haven't seen it yet but I would think it would weigh 6 to 8 pounds.
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  • jls9595jls9595 Posts: 1,128
    please document the cook! sorry to say I have no advice but wish you luck!
    In Manchester, TN
    Vol For Life!
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  • KeeferKeefer Posts: 119
    This is a couple weeks off -but I will be sure to document and post pictures.
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    You are going to want to brine the crap out of it to start. Many brine changes as well. Was is it spring or fall bear. I can help but that part is important.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • grege345grege345 Posts: 2,681
    edited March 2014
    I have been to many of these types of game dinners and always look forward to the bear meat. I've only ever had it in a stew type form. Always delicious. Good luck
    LBGE& SBGE———————————————•———————– Pennsylvania / poconos
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  • KeeferKeefer Posts: 119
    I wondered if the spring / fall factor might not be important. I will find out.
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    You are going to need a larding tool either way. Spring bear is leaner but more tender, fall is fattier but more flavourful. Stew is best but you can do it low and slow. It needs bacon and so on if you are doing a roast.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • KeeferKeefer Posts: 119
    edited March 2014
    Good information Steve. I will plan on a bacon wrap. What is your opinion of a rub vs salt & pepper?
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    Again, you need to season spring bear differently than fall, stronger seasoning for the fall cause it has a really strong flavour depending on where it was harvested. We have a huge issue here because of the tree hugger government cancelling the spring hunt  after being influenced by the tree-hugging Toronto businesses so a lot of the diet during the summer is stuff from peoples trash cans, fridges, cars and cottages. Sometimes on the folks themselves.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • KeeferKeefer Posts: 119
    This is a late fall / winter bear. It was taken in East Tennessee. Most likely feeding on grubs, bugs and typical bear food.
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  • cazzycazzy Posts: 6,903
    Damn...this is gonna be a pretty great thread when it's all said and done.

    No clue that there is different types of bears depending on the season...but it makes total sense because of when they come out or go into hibernation. Good stuff!!
    Just a hack that makes some **** BBQ...
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    Apparently I have been reported to the mods and my comment will appear after it is approved.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • TackmanTackman Posts: 206
    If it were me I would omit any seasoning, and cook it bare.....
    Cleveland, Ohio
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    Tackman said:
    If it were me I would omit any seasoning, and cook it bare.....
    I saw what you did just there

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    You are going to need some stuff to cut the fattiness. Soy, lemon, red wine, beer etc. There will be loads of fat but it's foul fat. Cut as much as you can out and replace with good fat. Bacon, pancetta, salumi etc. This is a test

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • KeeferKeefer Posts: 119
    So the goal is to remove all the foul tasting fat that I can and render the rest out with a low and slow cook while masking any remaining foul taste with brining and seasoning - correct?
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    Yes and I am sorry. I'm getting the post approved thing so I don't want to type a lot. I have done them buried in a pit at and they are OK. I've added some dried fruit and stuff to cut the ugly flavour. I said already that stew is safe.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • OspreydogOspreydog Posts: 84
    I cooked some form one that I killed last fall, it was for a wild game supper also. Yes you need to trim off all the fat you can. I deboned it and cut it into small chunks because people at a wild game supper usually only want samples of everything there. I used Marsala wine as a marinade and baked it at 350° for about 45 min. and it turned out great. Hope this helps.
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  • gmacgmac Posts: 459
    Trim, trim, trim.  Bear fat is not your friend.  The best bear I've had was in chili. Lots of spice to cover.  Bear can carry trichinosis so I'd suggest that well is the minimum.  If you go low and slow for pulled bear I'm sure you'll be fine.  
    And yes, the spring bear hunt cancellation was a joke.  We're seeing bears down here now where we haven't seen them for years and believe me, I thank the good folks of Toronto every time I go to the cottage to find the door busted to sh!t.
    Mt Elgin Ontario
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    gmac said:
    Trim, trim, trim.  Bear fat is not your friend.  The best bear I've had was in chili. Lots of spice to cover.  Bear can carry trichinosis so I'd suggest that well is the minimum.  If you go low and slow for pulled bear I'm sure you'll be fine.  
    And yes, the spring bear hunt cancellation was a joke.  We're seeing bears down here now where we haven't seen them for years and believe me, I thank the good folks of Toronto every time I go to the cottage to find the door busted to sh!t.
    I was going to mention trichinosis. I forgot...thanks

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • KeeferKeefer Posts: 119
    Perhaps I should go with 'safe' and make a stew instead. Would you mind sharing your stew recipe Little Steven?
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,941
    I have never used a recipe per se. Brining or soaking out in milk or buttermilk with loads of garlic will help. You can boil in soda water for a few minutes too if it smells gamey. I would use one or a combination of the following acidics to be the flavor base, red wine, tomato concasse, worchestershire, soya, teriyaki, red wine, cider or dark beer. Use lots of garlic and herbs and onions.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • johnmitchelljohnmitchell Posts: 1,541
    After reading all the above posts, here's my recipe for this bear shoulder....
    Heat BGE up to 700, throw the bear shoulder on (no seasoning) Indirect so as to catch any of the vile fat. Close the top and bottom vent, let the BGE cool....After about 5 hours, open Egg throw the shoulder away and eat the Hardwood Lump !!!
    ;)
    Greensboro North Carolina
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  • johnkitchensjohnkitchens Posts: 2,449
    Call me crazy, but this is what I would do. As someone else already mentioned people tend to like samples at these kinds of suppers. 

    First I would cut a small steak size piece off. I would remove all of the fat and then wrap it in bacon, salt, pepper, and a good dusting of Red Eye Express. You will probably need to cook it until it is 165 /170 so it will be pretty well done. 

    I would cook one of these first for me to see how it tasted. If it turns out cook them all this way. If not go to plan B.

    image
    Louisville, GA - 2 Large BGE's
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  • calikingcaliking Posts: 6,419
    Bookmarked. I can't wait to see how this turns out.

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
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  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 16,503
    stroganoff over egg noodles or a heavey guiness stew with lots of ingrediants. those would be my choices
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  • KeeferKeefer Posts: 119
    Ok. I am really leaning toward a stew now. I would still like to involve the egg if at all possible though. Any way I could cook the meat on the egg and then incorporate it into the stew - or better just to fix a stew?
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  • grege345grege345 Posts: 2,681
    Dutch oven in the egg.
    LBGE& SBGE———————————————•———————– Pennsylvania / poconos
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  • ReeyahpsReeyahps Posts: 28
    I have never cooked or eaten bear, but--just throwing out an idea here--what about something similar to Clay's pulled beef recipe?

    http://dizzypigbbq.com/portfolio/clays-pulled-beef-by-clay-roberts/

    It would be smoked on the egg but it also give you the opportunity to get rid of excess fat when you pull it and then to simmer it in a stew-like sauce.
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