While Visions of Sugar Plums Danced. . .

While Visions of Sugar Plums Danced. . .

Monday, April 19, 2010

Veal Tongue

Veal Tongue, originally uploaded by FotoosVanRobin.
I'm writing a poem about growing up eating beef tongue. Admittedly, I never liked it. But, it did made me curious to see what was happening currently with tongue in cooking.

Here's one for veal tongue:

This blogger says:

"(For the whole recipe and process read my blog : kokrobin.wordpress.com/2008/04/30/man-wife-slices/)

Fuchsia Dunlop adjusted her recipe for man-and-wife meat slices to the West, using lean beef, like flank steak. But originally this dish is prepared with slices of boiled ox heart, tongue and stomach. My chinese colleagues in Beijing used to order this and I would recognized the tongue and picked it out of the dish. Maybe not very polite to take the best from a dish, hihi, but hey, I was the foreigner.

Tongue I like, so why using flank steak? Only, I never made tongue before in my life.
And when I found it at the islamic butchers' I had to search the internet to find out what to do with it. Unfortunately, the instructions went from soaking it for 2 days to just rinsing it before boiling it in a broth. I decided to go safe and in the middle.

So I rinsed and then soaked the tongue in cold salted water for 4 hours, changing the water once. Then boiling/blanching it for a minute or two. Throw away the water and then finally put it in the broth I prepared.
I'm still not sure how much of this preperation is needed. The veal tongue looked/smelt/felt okay when I bought it. Hopefully I will know if I can safely skip these steps before the next time I will try this dish.

The next hurdle was deciding how long it should simmer.
The silly thing was that I had asked my butcher for an ox tongue and during the whole cooking process never realized it was just too small to be from an ox. But I only realized that after 4 hours of simmering!!! Haha. Which is way too long for an exquisite veal tongue.

I did check the skin regularly though. Recipes say the tongue is ready when the skin comes off easily. But even after 4 hours I didn't think it came of easily. I expected something like "the falling of the bone"-stage with lambshanks. But when I finally decided 4 hours were enough and was willing to cut the skin off, I found out that the skin indeed was coming of easily. Haha. You had to use some force, pulling hard, but it came of in a few easy peels.

Next time I will simmer it much shorter.
Or maybe longer, but in my crockpot/slowcooker. We'll see.

By the way, the tongue was still edible and quite nice for a first attempt ever of preparing ox euh veal tongue. Just not as velvety as it could have been.
But I'm happy and call it a success. :-) "

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