Friday, October 9, 2009

Beef Tongue or Easy Lengua

When you first mention beef tongue, lots of people's response is oooooh yuk!

It is probably safe to say that those people have never had a really good taco made from lengua!

Why is it so disgusting for so many people?
The taste that it has, is really good. Besides being my favorite taco choice, I will make it about 5 or 6 times a year to use for tacos or thinly sliced on a nice bagel or bun, some slivered red onion a little mayo, yuuum!

Here is a simple way to make it!

Buy a nice sized tongue that will fit into your pot.

Make a brine of Kosher salt and water. 1 CUP Kosher salt to 2 quarts of water. Soak for about 3 hours. Drain and remove, meanwhile,

Bring your pot to a low boil, add the onion, garlic and salt and spices.

Place the tongue in the water, and return to a low boil. During the next 2 hours go ahead and skim off any foam that may rise to the top.

After about 2 hours, keep at a low simmer. Be sure the meat is covered with water at all times.

Halfway through you can also turn the meat so the previously expose top is now in the bottom.
After 3 hours, remove the tongue.

At this point you can either make it for use as slicing meat or continue for making it in a sauce.

Once the tongue is cool enough to handle, take a sharp knife and remove the skin from the meat.

If you take your time you will not remove too much of the tender meat underneath the outer skin.

Once done, clean up the end, usually you will just cut about 1/2 inch and it will expose the non fat tender meat. Slice thinly and enjoy.

( some people prefer to strip off the skin, you will have to use pliers in order to grab it, I find just trimming it off much easier)

To make the sauce.

Either degrease the broth, remove the onions and stuff strain. I will usually remove all the large stuff floating in the pot with a spider, and put the pot in the fridge. The next day I can remove the fat with a fork or spatula.
Take the broth and reserve about 4 cups, place into a sauce pan, in the pan add 3 or 4 cloves of garlic, one small onion, 1 TBS vinegar, and a slice of day old bread. Cook for about 15 minutes until reduced about 1/2, process with a stick blender or in your blender, season the sauce with salt and pepper (salt if needed)

The broth is now degreased, take the tongue and cut into 1/4 inch slices. Place into a baking dish and overlap the tongue meat in the pan, take the broth and pour in on top of the meat, place into a hot oven 350 or so, for about a half hour.

To serve, place on plate or shallow bowl, top with chopped cilantro and chopped white onions.
A dash of your favorite hot sauce is also nice.


Stuff you will need:

One Beef Tongue 2.5 to 3 lbs.
1 large white onion quartered
1 carrot cut into 1/2 inch rounds
3 Bay leaves
1 TBS peppercorns
1 1/2 cup Kosher Salt


Leslie Limon said...

My grandpa used to prepare Lengua in Salsa Verde about once a month. I never cared much for it. I'm still a bit squeamish when it comes to eating the more exotic parts of animals. But, I'm learning. My favorite tacos are Tacos de Cachete!

Constantino said...

Well Leslie, the cheeks are right next to the tongue, I have never tried Cachete, the street vendors around here do not serve that for some reason.
Now I have a quest to look for it and give it a try!

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