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Crescente G. Villahermosa

How To Clean An Ox Tongue Properly
Feb 26, 2004

No, this article (hopefully to evolve into a series) is not going to give you recipes with precise measurements for ingredients. Rather, it will give you common sense advice on how to cook.

Clean that ox tongue properly:

Few things are more nauseating than lengua con sarza (ox tongue in sauce) in which the tongue was not properly skinned and cleaned. When properly prepared, ox tongue and also pig tongue, rival or some say, even exceed, the prime cuts of meat. However, improperly dressed, tongue has a terrible taste and odor because of the animal’s putrefying saliva especially near the throat and the decaying food debris left on the papillae covering the organ. To rid the tongue of these unsavory ingredients, boil it in water with a little vinegar and ginger. You need not boil it until tender. You will do that later during cooking proper. For now, just let it boil for a while, say five minutes. The vinegar will help dissolve the icky saliva while the ginger will remove the awful odors. Throw out the water and rinse the tongue.

To make doubly sure that there are no unwanted tastes left and to improve the texture of the meat, you should peel it removing the offending white coating with the papillae in the process. Slice thinly. Coming from a medium size animal, you should be able to slice the front end of the tongue into two strips while near the throat, into three. You will then have meat with a nice pink color and when properly cooked, it will have a smooth velvety feel in the mouth.

(Next: Preparing the Meat of Shark and Manta Ray)

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About the author: The writer is an unemployed émigré who, in his native country, used to be a university instructor, corporate communications practitioner, editor and self-employed businessman. He is now a full time “houseband” taking care of a wife and two young children. Two of his sons are in the armed services. Email Crescente G. Villahermosa: cresoganus3@yahoo.com

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