Hailing from Africa and parts of southwest Asia, the ostrich is a huge flightless bird that can weigh up to 250 pounds and reach up to 7 feet in height. Ostriches have long been raised for their skin, feathers and meat, the latter of which is compared to very lean beef. Ostrich meat is showing up more and more on menus, a direct correlation to the fact that the United States now boasts hundreds of ostrich ranches. Though some specialty meat markets may carry (or will special order) ostrich meat, it is still uncommon.
From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.