Cooking For Engineers Forum Index Cooking For Engineers
Analytical cooking discussed.
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

Beef Tongue -- gross texture

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Cooking For Engineers Forum Index -> Recipes
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Jim Cooley



Joined: 09 Oct 2008
Posts: 314
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Wed Sep 29, 2010 1:10 am    Post subject: Beef Tongue -- gross texture Reply with quote

So I had a 3 lb 5 oz beef tongue and instead of simmering it for 3 of 4 hours, I pressure cooked it for 1.5 hours following recommendations I found on the web.

Came out all spongy and gross -- bad, bad idea.
I'm hoping it'll firm up in the refrigerator so I can at least slice it for sandwiches. (Might make a "chopped liver" creation out of some of it)

But the bigger question is one of How Do You Tell It's done?

I've had this happen before when simmering beef tongues, but not to the extent I saw with the pressure cooker.

Is the spongy texture simply a result of overcooking, or is it somehow related to the initial size of the tongue? Most of my books say to buy smaller tongues -- even calves tongue. I wonder if this might be because they are less fatty?

Is there an expert on Beef tongue in the house who can help me solve this mystery? Ideally, I'd like it to come out firm & not too terribly juicy. I've achieved that before, but it seems to be a hit-or-miss proposition.

What am I missing?

Thanks,

Jim
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
GaryProtein



Joined: 26 Oct 2005
Posts: 535

PostPosted: Sun Oct 03, 2010 9:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My mother was the official tongue cook in the family, and she cooked it several times a year, so I never had to make it myself.

I can say from watching her many times, that she used to simmer it in her sweet and sour sauce and cook it until it was "fork tender" meaning a fork could easily penetrate it, but it certainly did not fall apart. She used to cook it in a large pot on a VERY low heat for hours, covered on the stove. I am sure she could have also cooked it in the same pot in the oven on a very low heat and achieved the same incredibly delicious result, but since she and her mother cooked it on the stove for decades, changing their method was not likely to happen.

To answer your question, your problem was most likely the high heat developed in the pressure cooker which excessively broke down the connective tissue in the tongue.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Jim Cooley



Joined: 09 Oct 2008
Posts: 314
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Mon Oct 04, 2010 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Gary. Your explanation for the texture makes sense.
Next time I'll go back to the simmer method and poke it every so often with a bamboo skewer.

My grandmother was the tongue chef and I wish I'd asked her before she went to the big stewpot in the sky...
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Jim Cooley



Joined: 09 Oct 2008
Posts: 314
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 7:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So I have a new tongue today (appx 2.25 lbs after trimming) and will try pressure cooking (15 PSI) for 45 minutes vs. 90 last time. It will cool naturally, meaning I'll just take it off the stove and let the pressure fall naturally.

I'm hoping it will be underdone! That way I can simmer my way to success. I just don't want to simmer for hours on end.

Wish I had some Marsala -- seems that would add a nice flavor.

SUCCESS!! Came out perfectly. I shocked it in an ice bath once the pressure came down and it seemed to make the skin slip off much easier.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
ablowyr3



Joined: 03 Sep 2011
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2011 1:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Glad to hear you had success. Your right, Marsala wine sauce will add a nice flavor to it.

[Edited to remove random links. Additional spam will result in banning.]
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Jenn007



Joined: 07 Sep 2011
Posts: 2
Location: USA

PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2011 6:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I never use the pressure cooker for tongue simply because I have no much control over it. Instead I boil it on the stove top with a bay leaf and whole black peppers; it could take half a day to get it done but for me it's worth it. Here is the rest of my recipe: The tongue is usually done if you can peel the skin off easily. Take it out of the pot and let it cool some; peel off the skin and slice the tongue into generous pieces. Cut 2-3 slits in every piece and stud it with slivers of fresh garlic. Layer it in an oven proof tray. Pour fresh tomato sauce over it and season with salt and ground black pepper. Bake it (350-375) in the oven just till the sauce thickens. Sprinkle with a handful of chopped Italian parsley and it's done. Serve with crusty bread and red wine.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
wealthpartners



Joined: 05 Oct 2011
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2011 3:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

GaryProtein wrote:
My mother was the official tongue cook in the family, and she cooked it several times a year, so I never had to make it myself.

I can say from watching her many times, that she used to simmer it in her sweet and sour sauce and cook it until it was "fork tender" meaning a fork could easily penetrate it, but it certainly did not fall apart. She used to cook it in a large pot on a VERY low heat for hours, covered on the stove. I am sure she could have also cooked it in the same pot in the oven on a very low heat and achieved the same incredibly delicious result, but since she and her mother cooked it on the stove for decades, changing their method was not likely to happen.

To answer your question, your problem was most likely the high heat developed in the pressure cooker which excessively broke down the connective tissue in the tongue.


May I know what was the "sweet and sour sauce" being used?
Thanks.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
JulieB



Joined: 30 Oct 2011
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Sun Oct 30, 2011 3:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Beef Tongue -- gross texture Reply with quote

I have used the pressure cooker successfully. That seems like way too long in a pressure cooker. Perhaps find timing for a chicken. . .you will love that. . .save that geletin for another purpose. . .and make an adjustment. . .Your recipe might include celery and scant herbs. . .I'd stay away from onion. Good luck! Big smile
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Jim Cooley



Joined: 09 Oct 2008
Posts: 314
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 10:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay let me write this down before I forget:

2.11 lb. tongue before trimming, root removed

3 cups water
cup sweet Marsala

6 cloves
5 medium Juniper berries
2 med Bay leaves
scant tsp ground sage (dry)
1 inch cinnamon (broken up)

Spices ground in coffee grinder and added to water & Marsala.
Tongue at room temp. Water & wine at room temp.

Using 4 Litre classic Hawkins pressure cooker. One whistle on high, reduce heat to whatever keeps it going (1 whistle per 2-3 minues) for 45 minutes.

Will remove from heat and manually reduce pressure at once, then shock in ice bath to make skin removal easier.

Smells heavenly! I suspect 45 minutes is a bit too long for this size.

OUTCOME
Spice smells nice, but after skinning the thing, I don't think they add anything at all to the flavor. Texture was a wee bit on the soft side; so 2 Lbs at 15 PSI for 45 minutes and a shock bath is over-done. I'd recommend 30-35 minutes, next time. Skin slipped right off.

I'm boiling down the reduction (about 2 cups from 4) for something...
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Jim Cooley



Joined: 09 Oct 2008
Posts: 314
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 1:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, trying this again. 2.36 lbs. Almost room temp.

Placed over, not in, boiling water in pressure cooker. I'm going for 35 minutes after first whistle, at moderately high pressure (exactly -way on the electric element knob).

I'm in Seattle and oddly enough the best tongues are at Sam's Club at $3.44/lb! I used to get them at the fancy butcher in Queen Anne who has to order them and charges $5.99/lb, but the last time I went in he said he didn't want to call a long distance cell phone number. So for want of 15 he just lost a customer. Wonder how much longer he'll last?

Result: Came out perfect! After 35 minutes I cut the fire. Then it cooled on the same element for an hour. Skin slipped right off, no ice-bath needed. Texture is perfect.

So I think the keys are, A. Have meat at room temp, and B. let cool in its own heat and pressure for an hour.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Jim Cooley



Joined: 09 Oct 2008
Posts: 314
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 5:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jim Cooley wrote:

I'm in Seattle and oddly enough the best tongues are at Sam's Club at $3.44/lb!


How has the demand for tongue increased such that Sam's Club is now charging $5.88/lb. ???
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Dilbert



Joined: 19 Oct 2007
Posts: 999
Location: central PA

PostPosted: Sat May 04, 2013 7:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the "meat glut" is over.

a lot of livestock were being brought to market as the economy went south and prices of feed went up / etc.

a part of it is not it's so expensive now but it was so cheap then....
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Jim Cooley



Joined: 09 Oct 2008
Posts: 314
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Tue Mar 04, 2014 1:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Okay, trying this again. 2.36 lbs. Almost room temp.

Placed over, not in, boiling water in pressure cooker. I'm going for 35 minutes after first whistle, at moderately high pressure (exactly -way on the electric element knob).


Yep, that's exactly right.

Did another tongue earlier today in the same manner, 1.93 lbs IIRC, so reduced cooking time after first whistle to 29 minutes.

The tongue wasn't quite at room temp, so that explains why I should have left on flame for another 5 minutes or so.

After 1 hour cooling in cooker on same burner, removed and set on cutting board until cool enough to handle and skin -- another 20 minutes or so. I have a hunch you shouldn't let it cool too long else the skin becomes harder to remove.

One of these days I should do a video on How to Skin a Tongue. lol. I've done enough of them to have it down to an art. Not a fine art quite yet, but the start of an art. Takes all of 3-4 minutes.

Hell, for that matter, chopping an onion can be considered an art, esp. when a good cook can uniformly and finely dice one in under a minute.

:-)

Jim
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
saravad



Joined: 17 Apr 2014
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply Reply with quote

Nice recipe, thanks for sharing!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Cooking For Engineers Forum Index -> Recipes All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You can post new topics in this forum
You can reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group