2008-02-20

You can't rollerskate in a buffalo herd



The photo is of the Bison Herd at Elk Island National Park, located just East of Edmonton, AB. You can actually drive through the paddock and see them up close and personal, just don't get out of your vehicle. These are massive beasts and although they look slow and docile they aren't. Especially when they have their cute babies to protect.


For those that are not familiar with it, here is the RCMP crest, it features a Bison head in the centre and way back when they were the Northwest Mounted Police, they wore Buffalo coats in the winter.

The reason I mention this is because there is a real stuffed Bison head, mounted in a plaque hanging at the landing of the stairs in the RCMP S/Div HQ office building where I used to work. That was the first time I had ever seen one up close and they are massive! I think the stairs were the standard three foot width, therefore the landing would have been 6 feet wide. The plaque only had about one foot clearance on either side and it was positioned high enough on the wall that someone six feet could walk under the head without getting knocked out. I know this because I had to walk under it and this was back when I was still able to wear three or four inch heels and did - all the time. It probably stuck out from the wall a good 2.5 - 3 feet and was about four feet from chin to the top of the head. I am guessing at the measurements as I tended to avoid that stair whenever I could and I never actually measured it.


You are probably asking "Why is she going on about Bison today?" Well, we had roast Bison for supper Monday night. Bison is very lean meat, so lean it needs to be marinated before you cook it or you wind up with shoe leather. This was a first attempt on the part of my friends to cook Bison and other than being less well cooked than is our preference for roast meat it turned out rather well. They found the recipe on the web, just picked one at random that sounded good. Next time they try it though, I think they will opt to cook it a bit longer. There are a few Bison farms in AB and they picked up the roast at the local farmers market. It is rather more expensive than beef, so it will not be something we do often, but it made a nice change.


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In other news, I got my new mattress today, it is clean this time, but there are a few pulls in the fabric on the top of the mattress, so I have to phone again and see what they will do.



So, what adventures in food have you experienced?

11 comments:

Tink said...

We eat bison burgers as a treat sometimes. They're the best burgers I've ever eaten. YUM.

Leah J.Utas said...

I love bison. We have had the burgers, sausages, garlic sausage, ham, smoked meat, pastrami, and bacon as well as roast.
You're right about the leanness. It needs marinating and/or a sauce.

The local RCMP detachment has a buffalo head on the wall in the coffee room. It is huge. I second your description.

Well, your new mattress sounds like an improvement over the first one.

Reb said...

Tink we have plans to try to bar-b-que bison burgers over the summer and maybe some steaks.

Leah, Bacon? Hmmm have to have my friends look for it at the market. I know you can get some stuff in the usual grocery stores, but my budget won't cover it yet.

Yes, the mattress looks much better.

the Bag Lady said...

Golly, if I had known you wanted to try bison, I've got a freezer full of the stuff. The Cowboy's cousin has buffalo, and we got half of one from him. It is wonderfully lean, unless they are fed lots of grain. Then they get a little more marbling like beef.
We also have moose and elk in our freezer.
Plus we have 4 steers we need to slaughter. Anyone want to buy some organic beef?

Reb said...

Well Sis, had I known you had it! Of course, you would have to deliver, or find some way to ship it here so it is still frozen.

Jo said...

I've had bison in a stew and it was delicious! Isn't it shocking how big they are? They're bigger than cows, and cows are still alarmingly large to me in person...and like bison, they're spry buggers LOL

At least the mattress is clean, but how annoying that it's not just right!

Merry said...

Does the new mattress pass the sleep test?

Cool! The moon is almost entirely back out of the eclipse. Just a little crescent missing from the top, exactly as if someone had taken a bite out of it.

Reb said...

Jo, it sure is, I wouldn't want to drive through the paddock in anything smaller than the Suburban my friends drive. Well, okay, maybe the Jeep I once had, but I wouldn't take a car through there, you would wind up looking up at them. Stew sounds good too.

Merry, I'll let you know in the morning. If it is exactly like the first one in that regard it will be great.

I can't see the moon now, it has gone to far to the South, my windows face East and I am in my jammies. Too cold to go out to look dressed like this.

Hilary said...

I've never been adventurous about meat. I live in a Disneyfied mindset.. though bison doesn't sound any more distressing to me than cow.

Am I the only idiot who kept stepping outside every ten minutes to take pictures of the eclipse?

the Bag Lady said...

Hil - no, you weren't, but you took much better photos than the Bag Lady!
Bison really doesn't taste too much different than beef - it's quite good.

How was the mattress, Reb?

Reb said...

Hilary, Bison is very similar to beef, alligator tastes similar to tough chicken, but the kangaroo we had was, lets say - revolting! It may have been the way it was prepared though.

No, I was not taking pictures, but I was watching it.

Sis, the mattress is good as far as sleep.