CHICAGO, Nov. 11, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- A new group of nationally-recognized culinary and nutrition experts are telling America to "flip the bird" this holiday season – but it's not what you think! The Bison Council, dedicated to educating home cooks and food enthusiasts about the taste, versatility and health benefits of bison, is encouraging consumers to forgo the traditional bird and give bison a try instead.
While bison is most frequently compared to beef, its nutritional values also measure favorably to turkey. A 100g (~3.5 ounce) serving of bison, versus an equal serving size of turkey, has less cholesterol (59mg vs. 67mg), fewer calories (103 vs. 112) and less total fat (1.35g vs. 1.93g)*.
"Turkey is so obvious at Thanksgiving," says Josh Ozersky, a founding ambassador of The Bison Council and James Beard Award-winning food writer. "I challenge America to change their Thanksgiving tradition and prepare a Bison Rib Roast this year. Its robust, rich flavor will satisfy all red meat lovers. You don't even need the gravy!"
To encourage America to participate in the "flip the bird" initiative, The Bison Council launched a series of humorous videos on its website. The site is also a valuable resource for holiday recipes, cooking tips and nutrition facts.
"Flip the Bird" Thanksgiving Challenge at Las Vegas World Food Championships
The Bison Council "flipped the bird" in a dramatic way at the World Food Championships (WFC) in Las Vegas this weekend, bringing together some of the most celebrated chefs to demonstrate the versatility of bison.
On Sunday, November 10th, the inaugural "Flip the Bird" Thanksgiving Challenge featured three popular chefs, each tasked to create a holiday meal with bison, in place of turkey, as the primary ingredient. Competing chefs included Emily Ellyn, creator of the Retro Rad cooking movement, Giorgio Rapicavoli, founder and chef of Miami's Eating House and Rick Giffen, executive chef of Stratosphere in Las Vegas.
At the conclusion of the much-anticipated competition, judges Josh Ozersky, Sam Hazen of NYC's The Chester and Roberto Treviño, former participant on Iron Chef: America and The Next Iron Chef, determined the winner based on the taste, appearance and execution of each dish. Chef Giorgio Rapicavoli was named "Flip the Bird" Champion for his three-course Thanksgiving meal, and was awarded a $2,000 check. His first course consisted of Roasted Pumpkin Bisque with Bison Sausage, Raw Pears, Pecans and Sage. His main dish featured Grilled Bison Ribeye with Charred Broccoli, Braised Cranberry and Yams, and he finished off with a dessert of Braised and Raw Apple with Bison Bacon Fat Streusel, Salted Caramel and Cinnamon.
"Until this weekend, I never associated bison with Thanksgiving, but that sure has changed," said Chef Rapicavoli. "As the first-ever 'Flip the Bird' Champion, I have a new appreciation for bison and recommend home cooks incorporate it into their favorite recipes. It's a great addition to any holiday menu and will be a big hit among your guests."
All WFC-goers had the opportunity to "flip the bird" throughout the weekend. In addition to the Thanksgiving Challenge, The Bison Council distributed holiday recipe cards, delicious bison samples and fun "flip the bird" t-shirts. During the event, attendees took the pledge to "flip the bird," vowing to replace turkey with bison for Thanksgiving.
"Flip turkey right off your holiday menus and replace it with bison," said Ozersky. "It's better for you, every bit as traditional as turkey and a true crowd pleaser. Every American needs to get on board the bison train and 'flip the bird' once and for all."
* Bison information: Grain-finished top sirloin steak, separable lean and fat, raw (Golden Bison Company, LLC. Independent lab study). Turkey information: Whole, meat only, raw. (USDA National Nutritional Database Standard Reference Release SR26).
About The Bison Council: Established in September 2013 with a goal of educating the public about the culinary and health benefits of enjoying bison, The Bison Council is a free educational resource for families nationwide to learn more about why bison is the better red meat. To find more information on The Bison Council ambassadors, delicious recipes featuring bison and a list of local restaurants and retail locations offering bison, visit TheBisonCouncil.com.
SOURCE The Bison Council