Hunting Washington Forum

Community => Butchering, Cooking, Recipes => Topic started by: Angry Perch on January 07, 2019, 09:42:35 AM

Title: Bear ham
Post by: Angry Perch on January 07, 2019, 09:42:35 AM
Made a bone in ham from my bear. Brined for 2 weeks, rinsed, tied and dried in the fridge for 4 days, then 1 1/2 hours cold smoke, and low and slow on the Weber with some chunks of cherry. Made a sauce with my neighbor's homemade blackberry jam with shallot, ginger and a sprig of rosemary. It turned out amazing. Thanks to merkaba93 for the sauce tips.



Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: mburrows on January 07, 2019, 09:45:58 AM
Dang that looks awesome
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Stein on January 07, 2019, 09:59:39 AM
Wow, that's probably the best looking ham I have seen.
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: onmygame on January 07, 2019, 10:06:30 AM
That looks incredible!

Nice job!
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Twispriver on January 07, 2019, 10:14:06 AM
Ham is a great way to use bear. I've never done one myself but I always get the hams and chops smoked whenever I get a bear. This year I used Del Fox Meats near Stanwood and they did a great job.
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Angry Perch on January 07, 2019, 10:20:53 AM
I encourage anyone to do it themselves. Super easy, and using an EQ brine, you don't have to worry about over/ under salting.
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: bearpaw on January 07, 2019, 10:28:14 AM
Ham is definitely one of the tastiest ways to prepare bear, you just need to be sure it reaches enough temperature to kill trichinosis.
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Angry Perch on January 07, 2019, 10:32:17 AM
Ham is definitely one of the tastiest ways to prepare bear, you just need to be sure it reaches enough temperature to kill trichinosis.
I was very cognizant of that. I pulled it at 148 in the coolest part I could find.
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Platensek-po on January 07, 2019, 10:32:43 AM
Just out of curiosity what temp do you have to reach to kill trich??
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Angry Perch on January 07, 2019, 10:37:56 AM
Just out of curiosity what temp do you have to reach to kill trich??

131 I believe, but I wouldn't flirt with that number.
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: bearpaw on January 07, 2019, 10:44:26 AM
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/trichinosis/symptoms-causes/syc-20378583

Prevention
The best defense against trichinosis is proper food preparation. Follow these tips to avoid trichinosis:

Avoid undercooked meat. Be sure whole cuts of meat other than poultry and wild game are cooked to an internal temperature of 145 F (63 C) throughout, and don't cut or eat the meat for at least three minutes after you've removed it from the heat. Cook ground pork and beef to at least 160 F (71 C). They can be eaten immediately after cooking.

Using a meat thermometer is the best way to ensure the meat is thoroughly cooked.

 - Avoid undercooked wild game. For both whole cuts and ground varieties, cook to an internal temperature of at least 160 F (71 C).
 - Avoid undercooked poultry. For whole cuts and ground varieties, cook to a temperature of at least 165 F (74 C). For whole cuts, let the poultry sit for three minutes before cutting or eating.
 - Have wild-animal meat frozen or irradiated. Irradiation will kill parasites in wild-animal meat, and deep-freezing for three weeks kills trichinella in some meats. However, trichinella in bear meat does not die by freezing, even over a long period. Neither irradiation nor freezing is necessary if you ensure that the meat is thoroughly cooked.
 - Know that other processing methods don't kill parasites. Other methods of meat processing or preserving, such as smoking and pickling, don't kill trichinella parasites in infected meat.
 - Clean meat grinders thoroughly. If you grind your own meat, make sure the grinder is cleaned after each use.
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: h20hunter on January 07, 2019, 10:44:45 AM
I wonder if deboning the ham would be a better......the one posted looks awesome by the way.....way to go?
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Angry Perch on January 07, 2019, 10:48:59 AM
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/trichinosis/symptoms-causes/syc-20378583

Prevention
The best defense against trichinosis is proper food preparation. Follow these tips to avoid trichinosis:

Avoid undercooked meat. Be sure whole cuts of meat other than poultry and wild game are cooked to an internal temperature of 145 F (63 C) throughout, and don't cut or eat the meat for at least three minutes after you've removed it from the heat. Cook ground pork and beef to at least 160 F (71 C). They can be eaten immediately after cooking.

Using a meat thermometer is the best way to ensure the meat is thoroughly cooked.

 - Avoid undercooked wild game. For both whole cuts and ground varieties, cook to an internal temperature of at least 160 F (71 C).
 - Avoid undercooked poultry. For whole cuts and ground varieties, cook to a temperature of at least 165 F (74 C). For whole cuts, let the poultry sit for three minutes before cutting or eating.
 - Have wild-animal meat frozen or irradiated. Irradiation will kill parasites in wild-animal meat, and deep-freezing for three weeks kills trichinella in some meats. However, trichinella in bear meat does not die by freezing, even over a long period. Neither irradiation nor freezing is necessary if you ensure that the meat is thoroughly cooked.
 - Know that other processing methods don't kill parasites. Other methods of meat processing or preserving, such as smoking and pickling, don't kill trichinella parasites in infected meat.
 - Clean meat grinders thoroughly. If you grind your own meat, make sure the grinder is cleaned after each use.

They put a pretty big cushion on there to account for inaccurate thermometers, uneven cooking, etc. But again, I wouldn't push my luck. I love the recommendation to cook all game meat to 160. I'd quit deer hunting if I had to cook venison to 160!
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Angry Perch on January 07, 2019, 10:49:59 AM
I wonder if deboning the ham would be a better......the one posted looks awesome by the way.....way to go?

Personal preference I suppose. I'm a bone-in kind of guy.  :o :chuckle:
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: bearpaw on January 07, 2019, 11:00:26 AM
For everyone's safety, it's pretty widely agreed that the wild strain of trichinosis cannot be killed by freezing and requires higher temps to kill.

https://www.healthline.com/health/trichinosis#prevention
Cook ground meat and wild game to at least 160F (71C).

https://www.cdc.gov/parasites/trichinellosis/prevent.html
For All Wild Game (whole cuts and ground)
Cook to at least 160 F (71 C).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trichinosis
Food preparation
Larvae may be killed by the heating or irradiation of raw meat. Freezing is normally only effective for T. spiralis, since other species, such as T. nativa, are freeze resistant and can survive long-term freezing.[14]

All meat (including pork) can be safely prepared by cooking to an internal temperature of 165 F (74 C) or higher for 15 seconds or more.
Wild game: Wild game meat must be cooked thoroughly (see meat preparation above) Freezing wild game does not kill all trichinosis larval worms. This is because the worm species that typically infests wild game can resist freezing.
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Angry Perch on January 07, 2019, 11:13:56 AM
Note to self...  :chuckle:
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: nwwanderer on January 07, 2019, 12:39:59 PM
Low cook temps, 131, is like running your gas tank down to half a cup.  Any head wind or cool spots trips you up.  160 is a great number, used to be 180.
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Angry Perch on January 07, 2019, 01:03:51 PM
160 is just a bit too far for my taste. I'm completely safe at 145, and get a more palatable piece of meat. I remember the 180 days. Pork chops sucked! It nice that trich in pork is a thing of the past, and a guy can enjoy a medium rare pork chop!
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Bigshooter on January 08, 2019, 12:29:02 AM
160 is just a bit too far for my taste. I'm completely safe at 145, and get a more palatable piece of meat. I remember the 180 days. Pork chops sucked! It nice that trich in pork is a thing of the past, and a guy can enjoy a medium rare pork chop!

I'm pretty sure pork was 160 and now is 145.  Except ground needs to be 160.  Trich dies at like 137 or 138.
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Angry Perch on January 08, 2019, 08:14:03 AM
160 is just a bit too far for my taste. I'm completely safe at 145, and get a more palatable piece of meat. I remember the 180 days. Pork chops sucked! It nice that trich in pork is a thing of the past, and a guy can enjoy a medium rare pork chop!

I'm pretty sure pork was 160 and now is 145.  Except ground needs to be 160.  Trich dies at like 137 or 138.

I might be mixing up my pig and my turkey. But either one sucks at 180! :chuckle:
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: JDHasty on February 02, 2019, 09:03:41 PM
Smoked bear ham can be used in place of corned beef.  Either picniks or rear quarters end up tasting the same. 
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: HellsBelle on February 23, 2020, 03:50:43 PM
That looks amazing! And makes absolute sense,with the pork flavor of bear! Nicely done!
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: 92xj on February 23, 2020, 03:58:00 PM
Made a bone in ham from my bear. Brined for 2 weeks, rinsed, tied and dried in the fridge for 4 days, then 1 1/2 hours cold smoke, and low and slow on the Weber with some chunks of cherry. Made a sauce with my neighbor's homemade blackberry jam with shallot, ginger and a sprig of rosemary. It turned out amazing. Thanks to merkaba93 for the sauce tips.

What was your brine recipe, if you don't mind sharing.

I'm thawing a rear leg right now to start the ham process
Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: Angry Perch on February 23, 2020, 06:46:42 PM
Made a bone in ham from my bear. Brined for 2 weeks, rinsed, tied and dried in the fridge for 4 days, then 1 1/2 hours cold smoke, and low and slow on the Weber with some chunks of cherry. Made a sauce with my neighbor's homemade blackberry jam with shallot, ginger and a sprig of rosemary. It turned out amazing. Thanks to merkaba93 for the sauce tips.

What was your brine recipe, if you don't mind sharing.

I'm thawing a rear leg right now to start the ham process

Here are my notes. I do everything by weight, and did an EQ (equilibrium) brine. This just means it's the exact concentration of salt you'll get in the final product, and it can't get saltier if brined for a longer time. That being said, this brine was a little salty, so next time I'll back off to ~3%.

The weight used to calculate the cure is based on the total of the meat and the water.

3% salt =  (meat + water) x .03
.3% cure #1  = (meat + water) x .003
2.5% brown sugar  =  (meat + water) x .025

I didn't weigh out the other flavors.

I cold smoked it for 1.5 hors, then did it low and slow on the weber with some cherry chunks to ~155 degrees.
Not sure the cold smoke was necessary.

Title: Re: Bear ham
Post by: h20hunter on February 23, 2020, 07:05:17 PM
Call to any spring bear hunters near me.....please kill a bear and let me make a ham for you.  All I ask is to keep a pound or so for me.