Introduction: Boiled Beef Tongue
In which I discover what this cut of meat tastes like and how to handle it. beef.
Step 1: Acquire Tongue
For quite a while Ive been having a stare-down with the tongue on display in the butchers section of my grocery store. Im a big proponent of the use all parts of the buffalo philosophy of meat-eating, and felt guilty that not only was I unsure how to cook tongue, I had no idea what it tasted like. Worse, due to my deficient cultural upbringing it looked, well, a bit icky. That prejudice clearly needed to be overcome to maintain a consistent ethical carnivore philosophy. This week I finally bit the bullet and purchased a 2.5lb beef tongue. After a read through the 70s and 90s editions of the Joy of Cooking and some web research, every recipe instructed me to boil the tongue for several hours before either serving it directly or in a strongly-flavored sauce. This seemed like a throwback to my grandmothers generation, but for lack of another plan I decided to try it for my first go. Thus, this Instructable was prepared in accordance with the Joys recipe for boiling fresh beef tongue. As you can probably tell, it came folded in half and wrapped with a piece of string. I untied it, gave it a quick rinse (youre supposed to give it a good scrubbing if it looks grimy), and dropped it in a large 8qt pot. It still doesnt look particularly attractive, does it?
Step 2: Add Veggies
Add the following vegetables to the pot: 2 onions, sectioned; 1 large carrot, chunked; 3 or more celery stalks with leaves; 6 sprigs of parsley; 8 peppercorns (Oddly precise, aren’t they? Needless to say, I wasn’t paying attention. Who knows how many peppercorns ended up in my pot. ) Cover the ingredients with water.
until the tongue is tender, bring to a boil, then simmer uncovered for about 3 hours. I let mine go for more like 3. 5 hours, adding water as needed and flipping the tongue occasionally, then turning the pot off and leaving it alone until I was ready to deal with it about an hour later. The exposed portions of the tongue turned a frightening shade of white while boiling (like any skin that has been waterlogged, I suppose), and then they turned brownish as it cooled and dried out. It was uninspiring because it resembled an anatomical cross-section a little too much.
Step 4: Peel Tongue
Next I removed the tongue and peeled off the skin. Since this is the stained, ugly part, things improved once it was removed. The tongue is a large piece of almost solid mustle that needs a lot of heat to melt some connective tissue in the middle. Without the skin, it resembles a more conventional cut of meat, despite having an odd shape. I only needed to use a knife to persuade a few thin bits underneath to come off without tearing too much when the skin came off quite neatly. Blood vessles, fatty glandular bits, and other auxiliary parts are attached to the lower sides of the tongue’s base and can be easily removed at this point because they feel different, squishy, and unmeaty and can be easily distinguished from the good parts. I found none of the roots, tiny bones, or gristle that The Joy mentioned removing. They didn’t provide any illustrations or diagrams, but perhaps a tongue cut differently would have small bones attached.
Now slice your tongue. I cut cross-sections beginning at the tip to better understand what was happening. The tongue is basically a tube of muscle on the outside, with two parallel stripes of a muscle-and-soft connective tissue mixture running along the inside. Slow cooking has softened the connective tissue, making these areas slightly wiggly and having a different texture from the external ring’s more muscular appearance. Lets look at some of those slices. The final pile of meat I’ve produced really looks for all the world like a rather boring pot roast, and cross-sections from the thicker part of the tongue look like PacMan ghosts, don’t they? Its almost disappointing. The Joy advises to almost completely remove the tongue by cutting parallel to the base at the hump. However, cutting diagonally can produce better-looking slices near the top. Or just slice it up as you like.
Now youve got a pile of meat. The Joy suggests serving it with a mustard sauce or with “horseradish, capers, or chopped pickle,” in addition to a variety of other strongly-flavored sauces. ” These sounded much more likely. We served the tongue at room temperature and put the capers and dijon mustard on the table along with the barbecue sauce as a precaution. Both the capers and the mustard worked well with the tongue and enhanced the flavor. It was deliciously reminiscent of the traditional horseradish-sauce-topped boiled corned beef and cabbage. Too bad were out of that one. For this preparation, the barbecue sauce was a little too sweet, but not by much. Another with more bite would have been a pleasant accompanyment.
Step 7: Future Studies
Everyone who tried it agreed that it tasted just like perfectly good boiled beef. This was surprisingly good. Of course, boiled beef isn’t exactly in high demand these days. Considering that tongue recipes are still stuck in the 1950s or earlier, we talked about some alternative cooking methods. To cut down on time, all subsequent boiling will first be done in a pressure cooker. It was useless to spend the afternoon periodically checking on a boiling pot in the kitchen. Second, we’ll build on the notion of the barbecue sauce and employ a different slow-cooking technique. We could cook the tongue slowly in the oven, shred it, and serve it with a tasty sauce, just like southern pulled pork (or Mexican carnitas). This should avoid the unfortunate boiled-meat texture and soften the connective tissues as needed. Dry cooking should also concentrate the beef flavor. It would probably also be effective to slow-grill or smoke it, and I’m curious to try deep-frying a tongue in turkey oil. That could be entirely too much fun. Other suggestions?.
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I frequently cook tongue (and will do so today). I typically prepare the dish according to my Romanian mother-in-law’s recipe, which calls for combining some tongue stock with canned tomatoes, Kalamata olives, and red wine. Wonderful, especially when served with homemade spätzle.
Ideally prepared with salt, pepper, mustard seeds, and a bay leaf, cooled, and thinly sliced Serve with freshly grated horseradish.
Im 68 & Scottish. This was one of my favourite foods growing up. However, my mother served it warm. I loved it in a sandwich with sliced pickled onions. It is much nicer than shop bought cold sliced tongue. Although I haven’t made it myself in decades, I am currently at my vacation home in France. Boil in a large pan for about 3. after covering with water for five hours (Use your common sense as I cant remember exactly). Remove any easily removable skin when it is cold enough to handle it. Cut away any small bones & gristle at the root. Look for a small bowl or pot that has round, straight sides. The smallest size you can get it into is best. Add a little cooking liquid, then top with a saucer. Find the heaviest object you can to weight it down. Next day decant & slice. I have also seved it hot with a raisin sauce.
My family has enjoyed this since I was a kid. We boil the tongue as described, but the spices are different, beginning with bay leaves. After cooking, we serve the tongue with a raising sauce that is easy to make: raisins, mustard, brown sugar, and a little water. I’m 60 years old, and I’m getting ready to make two today. cook until the raisins are puffy and soft. and pour over the sliced tongue! It is delicious!.
Tongue is a dish Ive enjoyed since childhood. lived on a working farm and acquired the taste for unpleasant parts. Rocky mountain oysters are one of my favourites.
There are many ways to cook tongue.
I like the slow cooker. Vegetables, water, salt, pepper, and any other spices you like with beef should be added. Give it 8 hours, let cool enough to handle. Strip outer layer and discard (My dogs like it) . Sliced meat is cooked in a frying pan with sauce or gravy, then it is served.
That was a great write up with helpful photos. I came across it because, like you, I had long felt compelled to try tongue but had put it off until about two weeks ago. I made mine very similarly to yours, with a small amount of variation. I put my 3 pound tongue in a crockpot. One large onion was chopped, and I added salt, pepper, and a small, roughly four-sectioned garlic bulb that had been finely chopped. I heated it up on high for the first hour and a half. The tongue was safely cooked (but not fully done) by that point because my pot actually boils the contents when set to high. I removed the entire tongue and made a sizable (2 x 3 inch) cut off the end. It was essentially so tough that it was inedible and as tough as leather. I was very disappointed. I reinserted it into my crock pot, turned it to low, and cooked it for an additional 7 (SEVEN!) hours for a total of 8 hours. 5 hours. When I tried it this time. It was a soft, unbelievably tender piece of what I can only refer to as “meat butter,” which is undoubtedly unhealthy but had an amazing texture and flavor due to the extremely high fat content. It tasted very much like roast beef (in terms of flavor), but the texture was about 100 times more tender and juicy and just wonderful; “meat butter” really is a good description. After cutting it up (mostly just tearing it apart with my hands like you would with pulled pork), I put it in a container for refrigeration with tacos as the intended use (since that’s what I bought it for). And sure enough. Without a doubt, the “Tacos de Lengua” were the best tacos I’ve ever eaten in my life. The best tacos I’ve ever tasted were made with just a soft corn tortilla, fresh chopped onion, cilantro, lime juice, and optional medium salsa. Wow! And my recipe called for VERY simple tacos. Later, I added cheese, tomatoes, and sour cream, but this more Americanized version is only different, not necessarily BETTER than the previously mentioned straightforward tacos. So. Regarding the tongue, it was so mind-blowing and delicious that I not only devoured it within a few days of eating the tacos, but I also returned to the store and purchased and cooked a whole new tongue. This time I made it more closely to what you did, so you know it’s good when I make it twice in a week. But I added even more veggies. Actually, I used tongue to prepare a classic beef and vegetable stew. Once more, the fat that cooks off probably clogged my veins overnight and made me fatter as well, but it also created the best stew ever. Almost everything in my garden was chopped up, including carrots, squash, okra, corn, green beans, tomatoes, and potatoes. I also used a 3 lb tongue. HOLY COW. Desperately wish you could all have tasted my stew. I allowed everything to cool down for eight hours (probably didn’t need that much time). This did 2 things. First off, it made it possible for me to carefully reach in and remove the entire tongue, leaving behind the substantial fatty portions on the bottom that the thread’s author mentioned. In this manner, I was able to remove all the completely pointless fat and simply peel the “skin” off the entire tongue with my hands. It’s amazing how the skin just slides off after eight hours. The additional benefit of allowing this beef stew to cool was that I could simply dip a ladle into a sizable amount of fat that had cooked out of the meat and risen to the top. However, there was still more than enough fat to give the stew great flavor and body after trimming the tongue and dipping out the liquid fat. I know this is a ridiculously long post, but I recently discovered beef tongue, and as you can tell, I’m more excited about it than I have been about nearly any new food item I’ve tried in years. It’s not particularly healthy, I suppose, but OMG it was good! Therefore, do yourself a favor and buy it the next time you see that rather unappealing and strange-looking hung of meat at the butchers (my Walmart even sells it, believe it or not!!!). I promise you will not be sorry! Kevin.
If you look at all the vendors at the Farmers Market in Minnesota, it can be quite affordable there occasionally despite being fairly expensive in the supermarket. You might check your local Mexican market for it since lengua tacos are common at the authentic Mexican restaurants here.
My mother combined mayonnaise, mustard, and chopped chives to make the sauce.
Mexicans call in lengua and chop it for tacos.
Famous in the Bakersfield Basque restaurants –Google Noriegas.
Slice it in 1/4 inch slices. Drop into a plastic bag. Add red wine vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, chopped parsley, and crushed garlic to a bowl and pickle overnight. Place the bag in the refrigerator and shake it occasionally.
In the Basque Section of “Frugal Gourmet Our Immigrant Ancestors,” there is a delicious tongue stew.
I made this a few years ago and again today. It goes well with kugel and a salad, and it’s amazing how the meat is so tender and has no discernible fat.
Just tossed my 3. Five pounds of beef tongue from the neighborhood Asian market went into the pressure cooker, along with some peppercorns, herbs, and garlic. I’ll cook the tongue for a little while longer since the pressure cooker’s instructions call for 75 to 90 minutes for a 2- to 3-pound tongue. I haven’t had tongue in years, but I enjoyed it then, so I’m confident I’ll still enjoy it now. Im not squeamish about organ meats. My favorite dish is chicken hearts, which my Brazilian friends grill on skewers like kebabs and season with garlic salt. OMG delicious!) and lamb liver. I really like beef heart, too. I’m aware that the dog will eat the tongue’s skin and other unpleasant parts. Shes not picky!.
Tongue is a cold appetizer in Russian cuisine. We boil it and serve it chilled with very thin slices, or you can make a clear liquid with gelatine and pour it over the sliced tongue. In Russian restaurants, you can find this delectable and pricey dish.
I heard hissing this morning; tonight’s dinner will be beef tongue:-)
It has been said to me numerous times that it resembles roast beef. I think I might have to accept their invitation to try it since I know a few people who will occasionally be seen eating it.
how about. Hey, have you ever tried eel sushi? As far as sushi goes, it’s not very adventurous, I’ll admit, but it tastes great! Barbecue it or give it to Tim to make into jerky.
Unagi is pretty tasty! Especially with avocado. We just had some last night. Barbecuing is not the best option, in my opinion, unless it is done very slowly because a lot of cartilage and tendony bits need to be broken down.
Eel, avocado and cream cheese hand roll: my favorite!
I have been eating tongue since I was a young child in Nigeria. y. city, not jewish either. I adore the consistency, and the flavor is unmatched. But it’s difficult to find in a grocery store environment. The next time I do a tongue stick, I’m going to give your spread a try. Normally, I have to locate a butcher to place an order, but as the world becomes more multicultural, it has become simpler to do so. thanks.
I agree; the flavor is like nothing else. It’s the most tender, delicious meat, and I’m currently boiling some.” This was prepared by my grandmother – no water was added, just boiled beef tongue that was salted at the table. It can be a pain to skin, but it’s so worth it, I can’t wait!
We frequently receive tongue from our neighborhood authentic Mexican restaurant, which is awesome. However, we recently purchased a cow, and when we had it butchered, I asked for the tongue. My four-year-old, who I already know loves it, and my 10-year-old are both very eager to try it. This weekend, I’ll definitely boil my tongue like you did. Before serving, a show we were watching gave it one last sear. Thanks for posting this! :).
How to cook beef tongue, how to peel beef tongue
How do you know when beef tongue is done?
How long should ground beef be cooked?Once the water comes to a boil, cover the pot and let it simmer. About 15 minutes should be sufficient to completely cook it. When the meat is done, it will turn brown, so keep an eye on it.
How long should you boil beef?
Beef should be fully cooked in about 30 minutes total, depending on the amount, size, and cut of meat you use. Because meat naturally produces its own liquid, you don’t need much water for this recipe. Adding too much water would merely dilute the flavor of the finished product.