I Heart Stew
One interesting thing I have noticed with the fall of the economy, is some more unusual bits of meat for the American market, cheap, offal being sold in our regular supermarket. I would have never have imagined finding ox heart, chicken feet, or kidneys outside of ethnic markets this time last year. But now, they are popping up in my little white bread Publix, and it gives me warm fuzzies.
So I jumped at the chance to try ox heart, which I'd never had before, and at $2.30 for a whole one.... how can you argue?
I chose a very simple recipe, as I really wanted to get a feel for the flavor of heart. And let me tell you, it is fantastic. More like very lean beef than offal, with a very very slight kidney-like flavor and texture. But I am betting if you were feeding it to people with a palate that isn't used to the flavor of kidney (like most of us yanks)... they would have no idea they are not eating plain ol beef. Which I think could be a huge help to families struggling, to cut corners with such a large nutritious piece of meat, at such a bargain price!
1 whole ox heart, cut into cubes
1 onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 carrots, diced
flour for dredging
salt and pepper 2 TBS each
1 sprig fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
1 cup oxtail soup
1 pint beer
Dredge heart in flour mixed with salt and pepper.
Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pot like a french oven, once hot, sautee heart in oil until browned on all sides.
Add onions, carrots and celery, stir until onions begin to go transparent, adding oil if necessary.
Add oxtail soup, beer, bay leaves and thyme.
Bring to a boil.
Cover and cook in oven for 4-6 hours at 250 degrees, or until heart is at desired tenderness.
Serve over mashed potatoes.
They'll never know what they're eating. But they'll know it tastes wonderful, and warm, and filling. :)