Crocodile meat for us is still an exotic product, although it has been consumed for a long time. The main advantage that attracted consumers is that animals are not subject to infectious diseases and are considered environmentally friendly.
Perhaps this is due to the presence in their blood of an antibiotic that destroys foreign bacteria. The texture of crocodile meat is similar to beef (see photo), but the taste is similar to fish and chicken. Reptiles can only be eaten from the age of 15. By the way, it is believed that the meat of an adult crocodile tastes better than younger options.
The best is the tail meat of the Nile crocodile. Today, in many parts of the world, there are farms that raise reptiles.
Crocodile meat has long been used for food where these predators live – in Southeast Asia, Africa and South America. Ten types of crocodile meat are suitable for cooking culinary dishes. Recently, due to epidemics of “swine flu” and foot and mouth disease, crocodile meat is strengthening its positions in Europe, whose residents are ready to pay a lot for exotic, but ecologically pure meat.
How to choose
It is preferable to choose crocodile fillets from the tail, as there is less fat. And the meat in this part of the reptile is more tender. Remember that meat should be fresh, have a solid color and a pleasant smell.
How to store crocodile meat
You can store crocodile meat, like any other, in the freezer or refrigerator. Of course, in order to preserve the meat for a long time, it is better to use the freezer.
The duration is influenced by temperature: from -12 to -8 degrees – no more than 2-4 months; from -18 to -12 degrees – 4-8 months; from -24 to -18 degrees – 10-12 months To properly freeze the product, fresh meat must be cut in portions, wrapped in foil, cling film or parchment paper. Fold the meat into a bag and place in the freezer.
Refrigerators maintain the temperature from +5 degrees to 0. Here the period goes for hours: from +5 to +7 degrees – 8-10 hours; from 0 to +5 degrees – 24 hours; from -4 to 0 degrees – 48 hours.
Remember that meat should never be washed before freezing, as this will shorten the shelf life. To extend the period by several days, you can wrap it in parchment paper coated with vegetable oil. Defrosting meat is only worth it in a natural way, so it retains more nutrients.
Crocodile meat tastes
Crocodile meat tastes like chicken meat combined with fish. Any processing is suitable for a crocodile: it is fried, stewed, boiled, delicious chops and canned food are made from meat. And one of the best Thai dishes is chopped finely fried crocodile meat with ginger and onions, as well as medallions stewed in a spicy thick sauce.
Most often, crocodile meat is prepared in the same way as chicken meat: it is stewed with vegetables and herbs. Crocodile stewed in dry wine and cream turns out to be unusually tender. Crocodile meat is versatile. It goes well with both vegetables and herbs, and even serves as a filling for a variety of pies and pies, casseroles, omelets and even pizza!
Crocodile meat can be combined with all exotic hot and sweet and sour sauces.
Crocodiles become suitable for food by about 15 years. Young crocodiles have more tender and juicy meat, but the meat of older individuals is harsh and gives off mud.
The benefits of crocodile meat
Crocodile meat is considered an environmentally friendly product, since crocodile cultivation does without the unnecessary exposure to harmful chemicals that most pets are exposed to.
The meat of this reptile is a source of vitamin B12, which increases the activity of leukocytes, strengthens the immune system and ensures a more complete absorption of oxygen by the cells of the body.
In addition, this product contains proteins and monounsaturated fats that lower cholesterol levels.
Crocodile cartilage, known for its antiarthritic and anticarcinogenic effects, has useful properties.
The calorie content of crocodile meat is approximately 100 kcal.
Harm and contraindications
Individual intolerance to the product.
If you have found where to buy crocodile meat and decided to cook it, then you should know that there are several secrets that will make it possible to cook this product at home. So, it is best to use meat from a crocodile’s tail for cooking.
The meat on the back is harsh, but it can make a good barbecue. The dorsal top is sliced in slices and the dorsal and tail are sliced for steaks. If you bought a frozen fillet, then it must be thawed at room temperature, which will make it possible to retain moisture in the product. After that, you need to remove the excess fat, since it has a specific taste. Remember that crocodile meat can only be cooked on the lowest heat, as otherwise the product will become tough.
It is not advised to cook meat dishes with a lot of ingredients. Culinary experts say that it is better if your dish contains no more than three components. It is not necessary to use many spices at once, as they can spoil the natural taste of the product.
If you want to marinate crocodile meat, you can use citrus fruits, rosemary, garlic, ginger, salt, etc. When frying, you can use butter, sunflower or olive oil. The use of margarine is unacceptable as hydrogenated fats can impart an unpleasant taste to the meat.
Fry the meat in a hot skillet, but try not to overcook it too much. Remember to drain off excess fat after cooking.
Is crocodile meat halal? read in the next article.
Crocodile meat on skewers
- Crocodile fillet 500 g
- Lime 1 piece
- Olive oil 2 tablespoons
- Garlic 1 clove
- Grated ginger 1 tablespoon
- Red chili pepper 1 piece
- Lime zest 1 teaspoon
- Sweet chili sauce 100 ml
- Salt to taste
- Cut the crocodile fillet into 2 cm cubes.
- Mix meat with olive oil, juice of half a lime, ginger, garlic, chili pepper, marinate for 1 hour in the refrigerator.
- Soak skewers in cold water for 20 minutes. Place the meat on skewers.
- Fry the meat on the grill until half cooked.
- Take half of the chili sauce, evenly spread the sauce on the meat and fry the kebabs until tender, turning constantly (the sweet sauce should soak the meat, not burn), do not overcook.
- Combine the lime zest and the other half of the sweet chili sauce.
- Serve skewers with lime and chili sauce.
Enjoy your meal!