Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Tasteful Tuesday--Organ Meats

December 10, 2013

Holy Guacamole, it's COLD! The house is toasty for the most part, but the little heater in my office has gone out, so I'm typin' this from the cocoon that a large quilt provides. Actually, it's quite nice under here--sort of provides a cozy environment with mobile capability!

Today's Tasteful Tuesday concerns the heart.

Beef heart, to be precise.

I received a couple of free packages of beef heart and beef kidney a few weeks back, since our food pantry got them in, and none of the folks who came through wanted the stuff. The lady in charge of the meat section called me over and asked if we would eat it. I said, "sure, we can use that."

So I brought the four little frozen bundles home with me, and they sat in the freezer for all this time.

I'll be honest--I had never cooked organ meats before, except when I had some beef heart ground up with regular ground beef to try it as it was described in; Confessions of a Sneaky Organic Cook or How to Make Your Family Healthy When They're Not Looking by Jane Kinderleher. The book was written in the 70's, and I tried so hard to use the information she gave...but the ex husband pitched a hissy.

Movin' on.

So, here I am with a type of meat I have no idea how to prepare, and wantin' to use it in a dish. I looked through my cookbooks, but found very little in the way of useful information. I tweeted Jeff Yeager, the Ultimate Cheapskate (I figure any guy who will eat a roasted goat head HAD to know about beef hearts) However, Jeff never answered me. Had I actually intimidated my Cheapskate mentor with my request?

Okay, now what? What else? I googled it.

I found many recipes, but none that looked all that goos. I did like the idea of fryin' it up with onions and potatoes, but that would take more work than I really wanted to invest at the time.

Instead, I rounded up some ingredients and enlisted the aid of my trusty crock pot. I figured since the heart is a fairly lean meat, it would do best if cooked long and slow.

I was thrilled to find the heart had already been cleaned and sliced thinly, so I tossed it in with potatoes (both white and sweet), onion, tomato sauce and a touch of water, and a pouch of onion soup mix. I popped on the lid and set if for 6 hours.

Whoa....talk about GOOD.

It was tender, not tough, and the flavor of the meat was extremely rich. The seasoning only enhanced the flavor, not masked it. There was plenty for dinner last night, and food for lunches also. Even Punky, my dog who is feelin' down, enjoyed some of it (she's much improved, btw).

I still haven't found a recipe for the beef kidneys yet, but when I do, I'll let ya'll know how it goes.

Don't be afraid to try organ meats. They are cheap and full of nutrition. In some countries, they are considered delicacies. 

Hmm...wonder where I can get a beef tongue?

Well, I got chores. Later ya'll.
© Evelyn Edgett 2013

No comments:

Post a Comment