Bison: Nutritious and Delicious

The word for the month of June at Bloomingfoods East is "bison."  The American bison (commonly and incorrectly referred to as buffalo) can be a healthy alternative to other red meats. Consider:

Bison, ground, grass-fed, cooked 3 oz.
Calories 152, Total Fat 7 grams (3 grams saturated fat)
Excellent protein with 40 grams, which is 84% of the daily value (DV) in a 2,000-calorie diet.
The biggest negative is that bison is high in cholesterol with 82 milligrams or 27% of the daily value.
Ground bison is high in vitamin B6 17% DV, B12 35% DV and niacin 25% DV

Compare to beef, ground, cooked 3 oz. (85% lean, 15% fat)
Calories 210 Total Fat 12 grams (6 grams saturated fat)
Good protein with 21 grams, which is 43% of the daily value (DV) in a 2,000-calorie diet.
Ground beef is high in vitamin B6 15% DV, B12 36% DV and niacin 24% DV.

Two of the biggest negatives regarding beef are that it is high in cholesterol with 75 milligrams or 24% of the daily value, and it is also high in saturated fats, with 6 grams, which is double the amount found in grass-fed bison.

To be fair, ground beef can be purchased with lower amounts of fat. Naturally the nutritional values of the ground beef would change favorably with lower fat content. 
It’s a bit of a misconception that bison meat has a gamey taste. The meat of bison raised specifically for the purpose of meat production does not have a gamey taste. The taste of bison meat is actually similar to choice beef, but with a slightly sweeter flavor than beef. Bison is full of flavor, and it is just as tender as most cuts of good select beef.

Here’s a quick and simple bison recipe that will please the taste buds:

Portobello Bison Burgers
This is a fairly simple recipe that uses a portobello mushroom as the 'bun.' I only used one mushroom per burger, but you could use two for a 'top & bottom bun.'
Time: 20-25 minutes

1lb ground bison                   1/4 cup chopped onion               2-3 cloves chopped garlic
dash of pepper                       1 tbsp olive oil                              6 slices of tomato
lettuce                                      3 portobello mushrooms

Place the ground bison into a bowl, add the onion, garlic, pepper, and any other spices that you wish (I grilled them as is, but I may try paprika next time). Mix well, forming three patties. Place patties in pan with olive oil, cook them, flipping often, until done to your liking. To avoid browning, flip often. Serve medium rare for most flavor. Set burgers aside when done, covering them to capture heat. Retain the juices in the pan.

As burgers cook, prepare mushroom by removing the stem, slicing tomato, and washing lettuce.

Once burgers are done, add mushrooms to pan, and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side. When the mushrooms are done, assemble the burger to your liking. I enjoyed these burgers with a side of steamed broccoli to round out the meal.