Nose To Tail Cooking
I love "nose to tail" cooking because it means no part of the animal is wasted. To me, it means respecting the animal's life and the resources that went into raising it and processing it. When you are a farmer or work adjacent to agriculture or food, it is easy to see how much work goes into that process, so it becomes difficult to waste food. Working with livestock makes me very aware of the undefinable element of "life" that goes into our meat and animal products, and I want to respect that life as much as I can.
For me, this means cooking with all parts of the animal. This week, I experimented with cooking buffalo tongue for the first time. I had heard it was delicious, and I knew many cultures cook with it regularly. After all, it's just another muscle. If you can get over the mental block of working with a product like tongue, it is a fascinating and absolutely delicious (and cheap!) cut of meat.
The cooking process goes like such:
Boil the tongue in salted water for several hours, or until tender. Or, pressure cook for 1 hour.
Peel off the membrane. There is an outer layer that is quite tough and easy to recognize, and an inner layer that is a bit tougher to peel (scraping with a knife should help).
Cook as you would stew meat or a chuck roast, braising for a long time in a flavorful liquid or pulling the tender meat apart.
I added red wine and chicken stock to the braising liquid, and reduced it with sliced red onions, then added it back to the tongue for a super flavorful and decadent sauce.
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