Though many people will argue that eating bears is the same as any other meat, it seems as though there is some kind of blockade on our cultural psyche that just shouts, “Eating bears is wrong.” It is interesting to note that we will eat chickens and cows and pigs, but all shiver at the thought of consuming a cuddly, or maybe just ferocious bear. For what it is worth, the only animal that has routinely hunted and eaten humans is the polar bear. Take that as you will. The fact is that people have been eating bears for a long time now. It was only around sixty years ago when cook books published here in America contained recipes for bear. Ask any bear hunter in California if they eat bears and they’ll probably say, Yes. Bears from California are not large enough for ornate decoration but these hunters do enjoy the taste. While not everyone may be ready to consume bear, there are old recipes out there that may just make you a believer.
The important thing about cooking bear is killing the trichinae parasites. Without hitting the proper temperature and holding it, the consumer can become very sick. Siberien Pelmeni dumplings, widely eaten across Russia, is a very traditional way to eat bear. In fact, these dumplings, in their original inception, were frozen and left along the trail to be eaten by bear hunters. This relatively simple recipe is a good way to eat bear, filling the dumplings up with pepper, bacon, a little salt, lots of onion, and of course, ground bear meat.
However it is you look at, eating bears, it’s been a tradition somewhere in the world for hundreds, if not thousands of years. This simple recipe might be good for a first timer, if you are the brave and curious type. Whatever hold the bear has over our psyche, whether it be their seemingly docile nature, or their portrayal in movies as cuddly, fun-loving types, some people still believe that, at the end of the day, meat is meat.
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