how use a lambs tongue?

I have a lambs tongue. What shall I do with it?

I understand tongue can be difficult for those who aren't use to it - it's my first time. I was imagining curing it somehow, then cooking it like we do with corn beef. Slice it really thin for sandwiches... This is what you do with tongue, right?

I do prefer my meats as a cold condiment than the main attraction to a meal.

Anyway, what shall I make with this tiny tongue?



lem M. March 29, 2014
Pig's feet contain a wonderful amount of gelatin and in in Europe there is a big tradition of using them together with the head to make aspic ("meat jelly?").

For my family's bavarian head cheese ("Schweinskopfsülze"), a traditional beer garden dish, you make a stock out of a pig's head (everything but the eyes) and feet, the usual vegetables (onion, leek, carrot, celeriac, parsley and a bit of lovage, parsnip and/or yellow carrot if avalaible), bay leafs, allspice, cloves, black pepper corns and optionally some white wine. Filter the broth, get rid of most of the fat and season generously with salt, freshly ground black pepper and red wine vinegar (and leftover pickle brine, if you have any) – it should taste very savoury and little slightly pickly. Chop all the meaty parts picked off the head bones, the tongue (if not used for something else) and some of the rind and gristly parts from snout and feet (both mostly (this is up to taste, I like a 1:2 ratio of pork rind to meat/tongue and wouldn't go higher than 2:3), fill into a terrine or deep casserole dish and generously cover with broth and chill in the fride for at least 4 hours until the broth is set and turned into aspic. This is eaten cut into thick slices with rye bread, mustard and pickles (especially gherkins) or dressed with thinly sliced raw onions and/or chives and red wine vinegar. The Sülze keeps in the fridge, well wrapped with cling film for up to a week and I wouldn't use more than half a head + one foot unless you have a crowd to feed or want to eat head cheese everyday for a week :)

If eating the boiled head meat, rind and gristle isn't your thing, or you have leftover broth, it can be used for more refined aspic versions, with vegetables like blanched carrots + peas, red peppers, beets, nicer cuts of boiled beef, veal tongue, hard boiled eggs,… veal/beef aspic is especially nice with horseradish.

Instead of making a terrine one can also make something more like a huge sausage using more of the pork rind and only as much broth as necessary to moisten and bind it all; sometimes blood is added.

Italian versions ("sorpressata") usually contain no or very little vinegar and are spiced with orange zest and ground chili, clove, nutmeg, allspice.
ChezHenry March 28, 2014
Charlie Trotter loved them. You'll find quite a few recipes in his cookbooks for them, and in his classic cookbook on Meat, a treatise on how to handle them.
luvcookbooks March 28, 2014
Chicken feet help make a great chicken soup. ake them out before you serve.
savorthis March 27, 2014
I leave the feet ideas to Pierino! But good for you for bravely trying all the nasty bits. I do recall though my dad's fondness for chicken feet- he said he would eat the "palms" and they were gelatinous and wonderful- to which I always got a wee bit oogie. My daughter loves to "scare" me with the packs of chicken feet at H Mart....but I have yet to ever try them.
trampledbygeese March 26, 2014
I ended up brining the tiny tongue for 2 days instead of one, because things kept coming up. Then I simmered it with carrots, garlic, onions, and some herbs for what was suppose to be one hour, but ended up being two. It pealed much easier than I expected, and was very tender coming out of the broth. I'm surprised by how yummy it is.

It's in the fridge to cool now and I plan to eat some tomorrow sliced up thin with udon and kimchi in a nabe pot, then the leftovers will be on a sammy with sauerkraut and some mustard.

Thanks everyone for the encouragement. Definitely won't be passing on the tongue again. We grow our own animals and it feels great to be able to use every part. Next, work up some courage to try cooking feet - pork or chicken, which should I try first?
pierino March 26, 2014
Ancora brava! I'm glad it worked out for you. Lamb tongue is really tasty. As to pig parts don't forget the ears and tail. Those are great too. I'm traveling down in LA this week and tomorrow I will be lunching at a place that specializes in all the nasty bits.
pierino March 25, 2014
If you pulled out the tongue yourself, brava! The bone then is probably no longer there---you don't want it to be. Peel it if you like but unlike cow tongue the skin is really thin.
You WILL like it!
trampledbygeese March 25, 2014
Thanks all. Great advice.
I have the tongue soaking in brine right now, plan to poach it after lunch. I'll probably peal it since the skin is kind of too much like the live critter for me.

Can you tell me more about the boney mass at the back? I removed the tongue from the head myself - first time - so I might not have done it properly.

All these yummy recipes, I am kind of sad I only have one tongue, but then again, I might not like it, so one is a good starting place.
savorthis March 24, 2014
I agree with Pierino on the tacos. I just had some smoked lamb tacos at a friend's house and they were amazing. You should braise it in a flavored liquid first (here is a rather long winded description of the French Laundry Tongue and Cheek recipe: Then peel it (my very least favorite task in the cooking universe), chop it, crisp it in a pan and serve with tomatillo salsa, cotija, cilantro.
pierino March 25, 2014
Actually lamb tongue doesn't really need peeling (you just need to remove that boney mass at the back). The first time I ever tasted lamb tongue was in a Basque restaurant in Bakersfield. It came out as one of those assortments of plates that arrive at your table automatically. I actually thought it was a sausage or something. I asked the server what kind of "sausage" it was. The response was, "it's lamb tongue." I've been hooked ever since.
pierino March 24, 2014
Your on the right track here. Curing it is a good idea as is slicing it really thin. It actually has a very mild flavor. I would try it with a mustard based sauce or vinaigrette. Another idea would be to cook it in a mole sauce and cut it up in small bits for tacos. You've suddenly put me in the mood for lamb tongue. I'll have to talk to my butcher.
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