So I have been posting a lot of clean treats and baked goods lately (have you tried these cookies yet??), but I can assure you that I don’t eat those treats all that often (though they are delicious AND fun to experiment with). They’re fun to create and share, and even my clean treats always have some superfoods snuck in there with nutrient dense qualities.
Today, though, it’s back to the real heroes of the nutrient density world…. that’s right organ meats. I posted about this a little while back, focusing mainly on liver (see that post HERE), but the star of today’s meal is the giant, often overlooked beef tongue. I can assure you that if you can get past the pictures and the fact that it starts out as a giant tongue, the final product is actually some of the most-tender meat you’ll find anywhere. You just have to trust me.
still with me? Good… keep reading
So, by now you are probably asking yourself, “why tongue?” Well, hopefully I can help clear the air for you. In our house, we eat some sort of organ meat (liver, heart, or tongue) plus bone broth at least 3 times a week. And always from grass-fed animals. Here is why…
I broke down the benefits of liver already, so now it is tongue’s turn to take the stage. Tongue is probably the tastiest (and most easily disguised) of all of the organ meats, and it still packs a nutrient dense punch.
First, tongue is a great starting point for those just venturing into the organ meat world for the first time because it is really delicious and easy to make. It’s very similar to other beef muscle meats, and many people find they like the taste more than many other cuts.
Beef tongue is an excellent source all of the essential amino acids, providing all of the building blocks your cells need to create new proteins in your tissue to strengthen your tissues, maintain your hormone balance, and help you make antibodies essential for immune function.
This giant hunk of meat is also very high in zinc and iron, two often under-consumed minerals that are essential in maintaining your health. Zinc boosts your immune system so that your body is able to fight off infection and heal from the inside out. Iron helps your cells produce energy. It also prevents anemia, a condition characterized by reduced oxygen transport, which causes fatigue among other things (which I know all about from first-hand experience). Just one hearty meal of this shredded grass-fed beef tongue, and you’ll be set in your daily requirement of each.
Tongue also provides necessary choline and Vitamin B-12, which each play a role in nervous system health. Choline makes up a component of chemicals needed for nerve communication, which is just one of its many benefits. Vitamin B-12 helps you make myelin to insulate your nerves.
So, how do we make it delicious… it’s actually easy really. So here you go….
Shredded Beef Tongue
WHAT YOU NEED:
for the crock pot:
- 1 beef tongue (I got mine from US Wellness Meats)
- 1 TB minced garlic
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp coriander
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp sea salt
- pepper to taste
- water – enough to fill pot 3/4 way full
for the cast iron skillet:
- 2 tbsp coconut oil/butter (I used Paleo Butter and it is UNREAL)
- 1/2 TB additional minced garlic
- additional tsp of each of the above spices for seasoning
optional additions for the meal:
- garnish with chopped fresh cilantro
- add organic/local guac and salsa
- lettuce or paleo tortillas for the wrapping
WHAT TO DO:
- if frozen, start by de-thawing your tongue (note: when you open the package, be sure to stare at the tongue for a few minutes in awe)
- place your tongue into the crock pot and relish in its glory
- sprinkle all the spices and minced garlic on top
- continue by pouring the water on top, filling 3/4 of the pot
- put the lid on and set it to cook on low heat for 8-10 hours (note: I flipped the tongue after 4 hours to ensure even tenderness)
- when your beef tongue has finished cooking, take a pair of tongs and remove it from the liquid and place it on a wooden cutting board (again, take a moment to just stare)
- take a very sharp knife and cut the tongue into quarters and peel skin (note: not for the faint of heart)
- once you have removed and discarded ALL the skin, you are ready to start shredding the meat
- take a fork or two and basically start running them through the chunks of meat, to pull it all apart
- in a pan (preferably cast-iron), heat some coconut oil or butter on medium (I used Paleo Butter)
- add more of the previously mentioned spices to taste and stir for about 1 minute (don’t let the garlic burn)
- take your shredded beef tongue and add it into the pan
- next, take a spoon and mix it up while it cooks and continues to get nice and tender
- garnish with some fresh cilantro
- we ate ours in lettuce wraps with locally made guac on top *note the supple leopard tool in the background (CrossFit problems)
After dinner, we watched my new favorite movie of all time… and Rusty loved it too! Now we have been singing Frozen songs for the past few days. Life is pretty good.