Archive of ‘Offal’ category

Grilled Beef Heart w/ Lemon and Cracked Pepper Marinade

Grilled Heart w Lemon and Cracked Pepper

When you and your spouse are both funemployed at the same time you get to do some really awesome stuff together.  Like wake up late and sip coffee out on the deck on a Thursday.  Like make breakfast side by side without bitching at each other because one or the other is already running late.  Like just decide on a whim to go take a bike ride along the C&O.  Like head over to the butcher afterwards and freak out the whole place when you ask for a beef heart and the guy says he’ll go see what they’ve got in the back and promptly slams what is most certainly the heart of a wooley mammoth–not a cow–onto the counter. What can I say? We’ve got fertile land.

Beef Heart

“What is THAT??” asks the lady behind me.

“A beef heart!” my husband cheerfully replies. “They’re amazing. And cheap. And are, like, the beefiest beef you’ve ever had!” What we left unsaid was that by eating the cow’s heart we’d gain all of its strength and power.

Grilled Beef Hear with Lemon and Cracked Pepper

Usually the easiest thing to do with a heart is to toss it in the slow cooker—they’ve got enough fat on them that they stay really moist and will flavor whatever accessory vegetables you put in alongside it. A “fancier” way to use it is to cut it into strips or chunks and just do your thing like you would with any other cut of beef. Being a holiday weekend and all, I figured now was the time to take a stab at grilling the thing.

Unlike other organ meats there really isn’t the need to disguise the flavor at all—the heart is a muscle, and tastes like any other muscle meat. If there’s anything distinctive it’s the almost “beefier” taste, if that makes any sense. I’m pretty confident that as long as you cut it right you could serve it to a crowd without anyone being the wiser. This is good because I’m not a huge fan of drowning something in sauce or marinade if I don’t have to…especially not when we’re lucky enough to have our herds raised on sweet, sweet valley grass.

Grilled Beef Heart w/ Lemon and Cracked Pepper Marinade
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 2-4
  • 1 beef heart, trimmed to your liking
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 T cracked pepper
  • 1 T coarse sea salt
  • 2 T olive oil
  1. Cut the heart in half, then place each half in a bowl or dish for marinating.
  2. Whisk together the lemon juice, pepper, salt, and oil.
  3. Pour the marinade over the heart and marinate at least 4 hours.
  4. Grill, covered for 10-15 minutes.
  5. Remove from the grill and slice to serve.


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Crispy Roasted Pig Tails

I may or may not have posted this recipe before.  But this one is a weeeee bit different, I swear, but still a fun riff on hot wings.  At least my photography skillz are moving beyond toddler-level.  You guys weren’t exactly loving the pig’s feet when I made posted my recipe, but pleasepleaseplease trust me that pig tails are a helluva lot better and less weird to eat.  Pinky swear.


One thing I did differently this time was indulge my obsession with Tessemae’s and use this sauce instead of making my own.  I guess I was making up for the fact that I completely re-did the brine…but this batch was infinitely better and more tender and juicy.

Crispy Roasted Pig Tails
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
  • 2 lbs Pig Tails
  • 1 c Tessemae’s Hot Wing Sauce (or hot sauce of choice)
  • For the Brine:
  • 6 c Water
  • 2 Lemons, Quartered
  • 2 Onions, Chopped
  • 1/4 c Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 T Salt
  • 3 Garlic Cloves, chopped
  • 2 T Black Pepper
  1. Combine the ingredients for the brine and pour over the pig tails. Allow to sit for 12-24 hours. This is an essential step to ensure the meat is tender.
  2. Drain the pig tails and marinate in the hot sauce for at lease one hour.
  3. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Arrange pig tails on a greased baking sheet and brush with additional sauce. Bake for 30 minutes. With tongs, flip each pig tail and brush with more sauce. Bake an additional 15-20 minutes.


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Tripe Sauteed w/ Bacon and Shallots

I probably already mentioned it like a hundred times but I got a new job.  Holy crap.  You GUYS!   I never ever realized how exhausting it is to pick out something different to wear every day.  I *almost* miss my potato sack of a uniform.  Almost.  No, that’s such a lie…sorry, guys.  I have neon pink nail polish on right now and it’s awesome!!

Buuuuuuuut with a new job comes some pretty hellish hours sitting at a desk staring at a computer screen.  And I don’t even have a nice comfy swivel chair to make it all better.  Pretty sure my brain is fried so forgive my crappy writing lately.  It’s all about the food anyway.  Duh.


So I know there are a lot of you out there who don’t exactly like tripe (*cough* ROSS *cough*).  But I happen to love it…if for no other reason than the price tag and INSANE protein content.  The funky flavor doesn’t exactly lend itself to too much “dressing up,” so I think it’s best with simple seasoning or sauce (like this) and served with roasted veggies or something.  BUT!!  I realized, as I often do, that I should really try this stuff with bacon.  I mean, bacon not only makes everything better.  Bacon is life.

So, um.  You should make thisBACON!


2 lbs Beef Tripe

4 Thick Slices of Bacon, cut into lardons

3 Shallots, thinly sliced

3 Cloves Garlic, minced

1 T dried Parsley

2 T Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper to taste


Rinse the tripe in cold water.  Place in a large stockpot and cover with water and a little sat.  Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to a simmer for 2-3 hours.

Once cooked, remove the tripe from the water, strain, and let cool.  Cut into 1-2 inch pieces.

Over medium-high heat in a pot or large frying pan, heat the olive oil and brown the bacon.  Add the shallots and garlic.  When the shallots are nicely browned, add the parsley and turn the heat down to medium.  When the parsley is fragrant, add the tripe along with the salt and pepper.  Sautee until coated with the bacon grease, then cover and let simmer for 10-15 minutes or until ready to serve.


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Bacon-Wrapped Sweetbreads on a Stick

I had to do some research for this one since I’ve never, ever made sweetbreads before…or even seen them for that matter until I went on an offal extravaganza.  So I had to do a little research for this one…thankfully prepping sweetbreads is a lot like cooking tongue or tripe in that they need to be soaked, boiled, and peeled before they’re even ready to be prepped into anything else.  Yeah, the whole process was a little tiring, and again, I had no idea what they’d even taste like so I was totally lost for what to do next…

So I put ‘em on a stick and wrapped them in bacon.  Bacon makes everything better, right?

Why yes.  Yes it does.


2 lbs Beef Sweetbreads

6-8 Thick Slices Bacon

Salt and Pepper

Water for soaking and boiling


Fill a bowl or pot with water and add some salt.  Soak the raw sweetbreads for 30 minutes.

Bring a separate pot (with fresh water and a bit of salt) to a rolling boil.  Add the sweetbreads and boil for 10 minutes.

Strain the sweetbreads and let cool.  Remove the outer skin /membrane.

Spear strips of the sweetbreads with wooden skewers.  Wrap each of them in bacon and arrange in a greased baking dish.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

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Buffalo Pig Tails

Look!  I updated my About Me and About My Food pages!  I actually added pictures and stuff!  Apparently people like that stuff…you know, so you know I’m a real person and all and not a robot or something.  Robots freak me the hell out…unless they’re cute like WALL-E.  Ross and I saw WALL-E on our first date, NBD.

So Food Network saved me again.  I think I mentioned earlier this week that I went a little overboard on some odd cuts of meat.  And I got pig tails.  How cute, right?

But holy crap, what was I going to do with pig tails?  Thank Krishna for Michael Symon and The Best Thing I Ever Ate – Halloween.  I mean, to be fair my Halloween wasn’t too much less uncool than it would have been.  Anyone daring to come near my door just encountered a lonely orange lady working her way through a case of wine.  And a face schmeared with Buffalo sauce.  And yes I am aware that these pig tails might look a little obscene, and I’m sorry, but there’s only so much plate rotation I can do before I call it a day.

**High Five!**


1 lb Pig Tails, cut into 2-inch chunks


6 c Water

3 T Salt

3 T Coconut Aminos

1 T Olive Oil

1 T Apple Cider Vinegar

**Buffalo Sauce**

1 c Ghee, melted

1 c Hot Sauce

1 t Coconut Aminos

1 t Salt


Combine the ingredients for the brine and pour over the pig tails.  Allow to sit for 24 hours.  This is an essential step to ensure the meat is tender.

Whisk together the buffalo sauce.  Drain the pig tails and marinate in 3/4 of the sauce for at lease one hour.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Arrange pig tails on a greased baking sheet and brush with additional sauce.  Bake for 30 minutes.  With tongs, flip each pig tail and brush with more sauce.  Bake an additional 15-20 minutes.

Serve with buffalo sauce for dipping.


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