Share |
Get your tiger meat to go at Meridian Corner, located south of Freeman at the intersection of Highways 81 and 18.
Get your tiger meat to go at Meridian Corner, located south of Freeman at the intersection of Highways 81 and 18.
Tiger meat is made with raw beef mixed with spices and served with saltines.
Tiger meat is made with raw beef mixed with spices and served with saltines.

It's Not Made From Real Tigers

Sep 14, 2012

It’s always a surprise when something common to you turns out to be quite strange and exotic to someone else. A friend and I recently went up to Meridian Corner, a watering hole located south of Freeman at the intersection of Highways 81 and 18, to sample their chislic and fleisch kuechle. He noticed a sign on the wall for tiger meat. He asked, “Is it made from real…?” “No, of course not,” I interrupted.

Apparently there are a lot of folks in this world who are entirely unfamiliar with tiger meat. Wikipedia hints that it’s more common in Midwestern states with large populations of German immigrants, but my Minnesota-born chum descended from Wisconsin Germans had never heard of the stuff. It’s a raw beef concoction, ground and heavily spiced, served with saltine crackers and beer. 

It may sound strange, but it’s a relative of the once popular steak tartare. Concerns about E. coli and other foodborne pathogens led to a decline in popularity for both dishes, but if you have a good immune system and a trustworthy butcher, the risks are not as great. But the butcher my family buys the savory snack from requested that I not mention his tiger meat supply, implying strongly that you have to know what it is and how to handle it in order to consume it safely.

People braver than I am make their own — but they know their beef is from a good source and they grind the meat themselves using well-sterilized equipment.  Since I believe in leaving preparation to the tiger meat-making professionals, the following recipe is presented for educational purposes only.


 

Tiger Meat

From Random Riff-Raff

1 pound extra-lean ground beef
1 small onion, diced
2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons pepper

 

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl; cover with plastic wrap and let stand for 8 hours. Spread on crackers. Do not eat after 2 days.

 

Comments

10:47 am - Sat, September 15 2012
*Just Fran* said:
Tiger Meat was a staple at every event held at one of my former workplaces. I hadn't heard of it before sampling it there, but grew to love it. A local butcher prepared it, but that grocery store has since closed. I know a couple area people do make their own and commonly see it mentioned in football party and Christmas cocktail menus. I think one area bar may also offer it from time to time. However, my German descendent (with Colorado roots) husband only knows of it from the bar offerings. His family never made it.
06:33 am - Sun, September 16 2012
Jason said:
It is available from a butcher in Yankton County.

I was told the original recipes were not ground beef but fine chopped sirloin.


It is delicious and I could eat it every day.
11:32 am - Sun, September 16 2012
Carolyn said:
They serve it at Wisconsin wedding receptions with plenty of raw onions and rye bread.GVHP9
12:49 pm - Mon, September 17 2012
Laura said:
Fran - Yeah, my dad has friends that make it at home, but it's pretty rare for it to be available commercially due to the health issues. I know a lot of folks are disgusted by it, but to me it's no different than eating sushi.

Jason - It makes me a little sad that something so good must be kept secret.

Carolyn - Where at in Wisconsin are we talking? I would LOVE it with extra raw onions, but would miss the extra salt of the crackers.
07:51 am - Wed, September 19 2012
Elayne said:
My mom ate what she called tiger meat whenever we had meatloaf or hamburgers, but in her case, she simply lopped off a couple "fingers" worth and ate the raw hamburger with no spices.
05:22 am - Thu, September 20 2012
Jim said:
It is no different than eating sushi. Eating raw meat is a bad idea.Even caveman cooked food.The best thing to do with tiger meat or steak tartare is make a patty and grill it.Then you can top the burger with onions, capers whatever.Very little risk of food poisoning or parasites.
08:32 am - Fri, September 28 2012
mary said:
I agree with Jim. Raw meat, raw fish and raw eggs are dangerous to eat these days. It is a sad reality.
07:58 am - Thu, October 4 2012
Karla said:
Kesslers in Aberdeen sells this in the butcher case. Practically everytime my husband goes to Aberdeen he has to buy a pound (or 2) to bring home.
08:04 am - Thu, October 4 2012
Larry said:
We have had Tiger meat several times and it is really good. I am originaly from Clark South Dakota and they have a locker plant that makes it and it is really good. They also have many other meats that one don't find too often.
08:04 am - Thu, October 4 2012
Larry said:
We have had Tiger meat several times and it is really good. I am originaly from Clark South Dakota and they have a locker plant that makes it and it is really good. They also have many other meats that one don't find too often.
08:04 am - Thu, October 4 2012
Larry said:
We have had Tiger meat several times and it is really good. I am originaly from Clark South Dakota and they have a locker plant that makes it and it is really good. They also have many other meats that one don't find too often.
08:17 am - Thu, October 4 2012
Jerry said:
"Tiger Meat" is called "Raw Hack" in German communities here in Missouri. Good stuff - particularly with beer.
10:40 am - Thu, October 4 2012
Don Richardt said:
We here in wis we call it wild cat. can be found at any meat market
10:07 pm - Fri, October 12 2012
Dave Frost said:
I used to go to the Meat Market at West Sioux Hardware- now long gone- a used furniture store now. I bought lean round steak and had the butcher grind it with chopped onions, load up on crackers, cheese and pepper and headed back to our favorite watering hole on Burnside, nest tot he Star-Lite Drive-in, to share with whoever of the gang was there. Been a very long time now- 45 years ago-WOW. but great with a good beer anytime.
06:37 pm - Fri, March 22 2013
Jim M said:
Some of you are worried about eating raw hamburger because of food safety issues. Well there is one way around that. You can purchase irradiated hamburger from Schwans.com. this has been irradiated for safety. Irradiation kills any bateria that may be in the meat.
06:32 pm - Mon, August 26 2013
Brigid said:
I love raw beef, and tiger meat is my favorite way to eat it. I am Wisconsin born and bred, and in my family it is a christmas tradition. Served wonderfully spiced and cold with rye or saltines with onions both raw fresh or lightly fridge pickled. I am the black sheep of the family however because I like mine with a splash of worcestershire. I can def understand concerns about raw beef, and count my self extra blessed that my father keeps a few head of beef cattle and grinds it himself so we know the quality of the meat and the cleanliness of the butchering and processing since we do it our selves.
04:23 pm - Sun, December 1 2013
Richard Hatzenbuhler said:
I also love tiger meat. I buy it every time I go back home. They have a store named Butchers Block in Mandan, ND. that sells it. They have been making nit for years
10:56 am - Tue, December 3 2013
jordan said:
I never tried it but I want to it looks good and you guys make it sound good!!
10:31 pm - Mon, January 6 2014
mike said:
There is an awesome place called dw meats in the bismarck mandan area that makes the best tiger meat I've ever had! They also do blood sausage which I couldn't find anywhere else.
03:13 pm - Mon, April 14 2014
Charlie Hatfield said:
Back in 1975, I was teaching and coaching in Winner, SD. Every week at the QB Club meeting we would have "Tiger Meat" . . . I loved it! DRank a few beers with it, too.




Share your thoughts, post a comment to this story:

Your Name:
Your Email Address:  
Your Website:
Comment:  
2000 characters remaining
Captcha
Web Design by LVSYS