Recipe Request--Beef Tongue

I know, gross, right? But my Mom used to make it, as did my grandparents. I think I’ve got the basics, boil in water with aromatics for four hours, peel the skin. But then what? Is it necessary to brown the meat in a frypan? How do I make the brown gravy my mom did? I’m pretty sure it had mushrooms. Any thoughts? Thanks, much.

Sounds like it could turn into a stroganoff. Don’t boil it, let it simmer (low bubbling) for that time. Dice some onions, saute in butter and set aside. Saute sliced mushrooms in the same pan with more butter, salt and pepper it to taste, then also set the mushrooms aside. Fry some flour with butter and oil to make a roux, then whisk in hot beef stock to make a gravy. Put the onions and mushrooms back into the gravy, stir together, turn the heat off and cover to let all the flavors mix. Stir in some sour cream if you want to make it richer. Peel the tongue, slice it into half-inch slices and arrange on the plate. Pour the gravy on top and serve with egg noodles or mashed potatoes.

At least, that’s what I’d do… :slight_smile:

You… you have to peel it? I’ve always wanted to try tongue, as I hear it’s quite good, but this isn’t exactly tongue central here. (Maybe in the Mexican grocery stores, but I hate to commit to a meat I’m not sure I’m going to like when it’s my whole lunch, you know? Especially if I’m a little unsure, given the language barrier, if I’m not liking it because of the meat or the preparation.)

ETA - so when you peel it… is it… does it look like a tongue? With taste buds?

You’re peeling the outer layer with the taste buds off. I haven’t made it myself, but I’ve eaten plenty of them, and watched my dad prepare one for the grill.

Corned beef tongue makes a great sandwich!

The only time I’ve had tongue, it was used for tacos. It’s an interesting flavour, but I enjoyed. Yes, you peel the outer part off and what’s below looks like any other cut of beef.

Peel the thick skin on the tip. I will brine mine in a salty/spicy water for a day in the fridge, then just bake until temp is right. Then use some alcohol to deglaze the pan and make a sauce. Always cut across the grain.

Tacos de lengua are really nice. Especially with a lot of lime and cilantro.

After saying in this thread from 2007 that “I’ve never tried to fix it myself at home, but I would like to someday” I finally got around to doing it! A Mexican market a half block from my house always has them, but I finally got spurred to buy one because they were on sale for $1.99 a pound. I didn’t note what the regular price was though I will find out here soon because now that I’ve fixed it at home I’ll be buying it a lot more often.

I told the guy behind the counter that I wanted “2 pounds of tongue.” Being nice, or perhaps not speaking enough English to understand that I’d just sounded like an idiot, he pointed at one of the many tongues in the display case. I nodded my head and he took the whole thing out and wrapped it up. I now get that when you buy a tongue, you buy a tongue, a whole tongue, not part of a tongue. Looking at the label I saw that it was 3 pounds, 11 ounces, and cost $6.19.

It sat in my fridge for 2 days because I wasn’t looking forward to actually having to touch the thing.

Finally I said, what the hell, if I don’t fix it, it’ll go bad and I’ll just have to throw it away. I got it out, and scrubbed and rinsed the hell out of it. I don’t know that that was necessary, but I felt better doing it. The taste buds part was so hard, and I couldn’t imagine eating it! Ugh. Well, of course, you don’t, but at the time, I thought you did. I put a little water in the crock pot and then just dumped in a bunch of spices. A few turns of freshly ground pepper, a bit of kosher salt, a bit of garlic salt, several turns of freshly ground Steaks & Chops seasoning (that brand, only, Steaks & Chops) and a few shakes of garlic powder. I didn’t measure anything, I didn’t work from a recipe, I just dumped it all into the crock pot. Then I added the tongue, which almost didn’t fit, it was so big! I used my medium sized CP, but next time I’ll use my regular sized CP. I put more water in, was going to cover the tongue but that would have overflowed the CP. I got most of it covered though, all except a small bit. I turned it on, and went to bed.

I ended up sleeping for 10 hours, and when I got up the water was brown and bubbly, with a bit of, ugh, brown foam around the edges. I used a fork and tongs to take the tongue out of the CP and put it into a glass pie dish. I let it cool for about 15 minutes and then went back in to study it. As the meat cooked, it fell away from the taste buds part and I suddenly realized what people meant when they said you had to “peel it.” I took a knife and started cutting from the back (top) of the tongue to the front and then I was able to get a grip on it and yes, just peeled it right off. I’ll just use a pair of kitchen shears next time. I took a fork and scraped the exposed tongue a bit just to see how the meat would come apart.

Boy, it looked like a tongue when it went in, and it looked like a tongue when it came out, and it still looked like a tongue after peeling. I was used to tongue being cut into small chunks when served in tacos. I’m a hard-core carnivore, but damn, the whole thing in front of me was a bit surreal.

One of the recipes I read, but didn’t follow, had said, be sure to cut away and discard all the fatty meat underneath the tongue. Well, damn, that actually looked like the best part! I figured they said that from an anti-fat standpoint, rather than from a “this part is not good” standpoint. I cut off a bit of it and put it on a plate, then I cut off the end of the tongue and put that on the plate too. I held my breath, and sighed and said, here goes nothing, and took a bite of the end.


Then I took a bite of the fatty bit from underneath the tongue.

OH MY GOD IT WAS SO DELICIOUS!!! Melt in your mouth goodness!

I can not BELIEVE I’ve waited so long to do this, and missed out on many many delicious meals. My husband was out of town and I was so excited I took pictures and sent them to him. :smiley:

This view is the underside of the tongue, with the fatty area that I was supposed to throw away! Next to it is the discarded peelings of the taste buds part.

This is a slightly different angle. I didn’t take a picture from the top of the tongue. By the time I took the pictures it had cooled completely and some of the grease had congealed. I threw the next pieces I ate back into the crock pot to warm up in the cooling but still very warm water. They tasted even better warmed up.

Next time I’m going to throw in some real garlic. And oh my yes, there will be a next time. Many next times!

Banned in 16 days?

Anyway, glad to hear that tongue tastes good, but I doubt that I will seek it out anytime soon.

Banned? What/who’s banned?

The OP.

Wow, I didn’t even notice that. Tongue is delicious, but boy, it’s dangerous!