Chapter 11 Specialty Meats 2007 Thomson Delmar Learning

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Chapter 11 Specialty Meats © 2007 Thomson Delmar Learning. All Rights Reserved.

Chapter 11 Specialty Meats © 2007 Thomson Delmar Learning. All Rights Reserved.

Offal/Specialty Meats/Organ Meats • The word offal comes from the Old English “off” and

Offal/Specialty Meats/Organ Meats • The word offal comes from the Old English “off” and “fall” referring to the pieces that fall from the animal carcass during butchering • Other names: offal cuts, specialty meats, organ meats, variety meats, bad meats, and cheap meats

Liver • If liver is going to be cooked by any dry method of

Liver • If liver is going to be cooked by any dry method of cooking, great care must be taken to ensure that it is not overcooked • If overcooked, it will harden, toughen, and change flavor considerably • The thinner the cut, the faster it will need to be cooked • Inaccuracy in removal of the silver skin cause curling of the liver during cooking resulting in poor presentation and toughness

Beef Liver • Quality Factors – Should have a bright color with a moist

Beef Liver • Quality Factors – Should have a bright color with a moist but not slimy surface and fresh smell – Is darker and has a stronger taste than all other livers – Is generally toughest of all livers – Can weight 8 to 12 pounds

Calf’s Liver • Should be deep rose to reddish brown in color • Should

Calf’s Liver • Should be deep rose to reddish brown in color • Should not have any dark red or purple tinges • Should not have any blood spots or bruising • Should weight on average 7 pounds

Lamb Liver • Has sharp and distinctive odor • Very light reddish brown in

Lamb Liver • Has sharp and distinctive odor • Very light reddish brown in color • Color should be lively and have a bright bloom; should not show any sign of dullness • Resembles calf’s liver, and is sometimes mistakenly sold as calf’s liver • Generally very tender

Lamb Liver • Weighs on average about 2 pounds • Dries very quickly if

Lamb Liver • Weighs on average about 2 pounds • Dries very quickly if overcooked

Pork Liver • Has a strong odor and flavor • Color should be lively

Pork Liver • Has a strong odor and flavor • Color should be lively and have a light reddish brown tinge • Weighs on average 3 pounds • Is primarily used in the production of pâtes and sausages, although it can be sautéed and fried

Cleaning Liver • Wash well and pat dry • Remove any tough membranes, tubes,

Cleaning Liver • Wash well and pat dry • Remove any tough membranes, tubes, and sinews • Take great care not to damage the structure during removal of veins • Skin the liver by removing tough silver skin that surrounds it • Slice as desired

Chicken and Duck Liver • Quality Points – Should be firm and well shaped

Chicken and Duck Liver • Quality Points – Should be firm and well shaped – Should not have any evidence of the gallbladder remaining—easily recognized by green staining – Should be a rich dark reddish brown with a bright bloom – Should be intact, not mashed or damaged in any way

Foie Gras • Romans (1 st century BC) realized that goose liver was greatly

Foie Gras • Romans (1 st century BC) realized that goose liver was greatly improved when the geese were fed fresh figs • Ashkenazi Jews of central Europe are credited with disseminating the method of cultivation of foie gras • Escoffier created step-by-step instructions on preparing the liver foie gras as we know it today • Literal translation from the French is “fat liver”

Foie Gras • Quality Points – Color should be light yellow to amber –

Foie Gras • Quality Points – Color should be light yellow to amber – The lighter the liver, the less fat is contained in the liver – Should be firm and resilient to touch – Should give slightly under thumb pressure, and the thumb mark should remain visible – The higher the grade, the fewer blemishes should be present

Foie Gras • Quality Points – Grade A livers must weigh at least 1½

Foie Gras • Quality Points – Grade A livers must weigh at least 1½ pounds – Grade B livers should weigh between ¾ and 1½ pounds – Grade C livers were less than 1 pound – The size of the liver will determine how much vein is contained within

Foie Gras • Quality Points – Finest livers should be relatively free of any

Foie Gras • Quality Points – Finest livers should be relatively free of any bruises or blemishes – Surface blood spots, or small red pin dots, indicate a breakdown of capillaries or an excessive number of veins that will affect the flavor and texture of the finished dish

Foie Gras • Quality Points – Generally sold in individual vacuum-sealed packages and should

Foie Gras • Quality Points – Generally sold in individual vacuum-sealed packages and should remain in packages until ready for use – Will keep for 2 weeks in vacuum seal in the refrigerator – Best when used within 1 week of purchase – When removed from vacuum package, use immediately, or wrap tightly in plastic and use within 48 hours

Foie Gras • Quality Points – Freezing and defrosting destroy cell walls within the

Foie Gras • Quality Points – Freezing and defrosting destroy cell walls within the foie gras, allowing moisture to evaporate – Residual blood left in veins can be removed by soaking in milk for 2 hours (may not be necessary because of modern processing) – Goose liver is slightly larger than duck liver

Foie Gras Preparation • Hot Preparation – Using a slightly chilled liver, separate the

Foie Gras Preparation • Hot Preparation – Using a slightly chilled liver, separate the lobes by gently inserting your hands between the lobes, and with one lobe in each hand, pull them apart – Use a sharp knife to cut the connective membranes and nerves between the lobes – Trim away any visible membranes, veins, and green bile

Foie Gras Preparation • Hot Preparation – Cut lobes into medallions of differing sizes

Foie Gras Preparation • Hot Preparation – Cut lobes into medallions of differing sizes depending on the method of cooking – Always use a sharp knife dipped in hot water and slice the liver on a diagonal

Foie Gras Preparation • Cold Preparation – Remove the Vein: • Bring the liver

Foie Gras Preparation • Cold Preparation – Remove the Vein: • Bring the liver to room temperature by removing the foie gras from the vacuumed package, rinsing well, and immersing it in a water bath of 95ºF (35ºC). • After soaking for one hour, the liver will be pliable enough to clean • Separate the two lobes and, with the larger lobe lying upside down, find the area where the connecting membranes and veins have been cut

Foie Gras Preparation • Cold Preparation – Remove the Vein: • Gently tug the

Foie Gras Preparation • Cold Preparation – Remove the Vein: • Gently tug the membrane to reveal the location of the central vein of the lobe; as you pull, use your other hand to gently peel back the flesh of the liver, tracing the location of the vein • Clean the foie gras without breaking it into pieces; the central vein reaches roughly two thirds down the middle of the large lobe before it forks into two separate directions, forming an upside-down “Y” • Remove it gently, following it at all times; remove all membranes at the same time as the veins

Foie Gras Preparation • Cold Preparation – Remove the Vein: • You should have

Foie Gras Preparation • Cold Preparation – Remove the Vein: • You should have a somewhat flattened but intact lobe • Do the same for the other lobe • Discard the membranes and veins; using the cleaned lobes, continue with the recipe

Sweetbreads • Most delicately flavored of the offal meats • Most sought after for

Sweetbreads • Most delicately flavored of the offal meats • Most sought after for their subtle flavor and wonderful texture • They are the small thymus glands from the neck and heart of young steers, calves, and lamb • The round lobe is found near the heart • The longer elongated lobe is from the throat in the neck of the animal

Sweetbreads • Quality Factors – Should be light, bright, and rosy in color –

Sweetbreads • Quality Factors – Should be light, bright, and rosy in color – The larger size is more desirable – Should not have any blood spots or bruising visible – Outer membrane is removed either before or after cooking

Cooking Sweetbreads • Soak in cold water for about 6 to 8 hours, changing

Cooking Sweetbreads • Soak in cold water for about 6 to 8 hours, changing the water often • Blanch in simmering water with a little lemon juice or vinegar added for about 2 minutes to help firm their texture and prepare them for trimming • Chill immediately and pat dry

Cooking Sweetbreads • Carefully trim off all tubes, sinews, and any fat, pressing very

Cooking Sweetbreads • Carefully trim off all tubes, sinews, and any fat, pressing very lightly between 2 boards to even their size • The sweetbreads can now be larded or studded as desired • They are braised brown or white, sautéed, or fried

Tongue • Quality Points – There should be no throat bones or cartilage attached

Tongue • Quality Points – There should be no throat bones or cartilage attached – Wash well in cold water to remove any blood • Cooking – Tongues should be soaked in acidulated water for an hour or in plain water overnight if the tongues are to be salted – Tongue has a thick outer layer of skin and requires a long, slow, moist cooking method to make it tender enough to eat

Tongue • Cooking – Cook by poaching, and when it is fully cooked, quickly

Tongue • Cooking – Cook by poaching, and when it is fully cooked, quickly plunge into cold water; the skin is then split and peeled off like a glove – Before serving, cut away any roots, small bones, or gristle that might still be present at the neck end – Tongues can be pickled and pressed into shapes before cutting, but this must be done after skinning and before they are completely cooled

Heart • Quality Points – Hearts should have a fresh smell and red color

Heart • Quality Points – Hearts should have a fresh smell and red color not brown or gray – Store loosely wrapped in the refrigerator for no more than 3 days • Cooking – All hearts should be thoroughly washed before cooking, and the membrane inside that divides the two heart chambers should be removed, particularly if the heart is to be stuffed

Heart • Cooking – Open the heart without separating halves – Trim off excess

Heart • Cooking – Open the heart without separating halves – Trim off excess fat and tubes – Remove clots of blood and sprinkle with olive oil and lemon juice – Marinate for 1 to 2 hours and season with salt and pepper – Stuff with pork forcemeat or savory stuffing

Heart • Cooking – Wrap in larding bacon (cut paper-thin) or in pig’s caul

Heart • Cooking – Wrap in larding bacon (cut paper-thin) or in pig’s caul – Tie well with string and cook gently by roasting or braising – Alternately, the heart may be sewn closed for cooking

Kidneys • Rules for purchase: – Should not appear limp or have a strong

Kidneys • Rules for purchase: – Should not appear limp or have a strong smell – Are highly perishable and should be prepared promptly after they are purchased – Should have a bright appearance and should not appear shriveled in any way – Should be firm, pink, or pale red rather than purple, and should not have a uric acid smell

Lamb Kidneys • Preparation for cooking: – Slit on bulging side and open without

Lamb Kidneys • Preparation for cooking: – Slit on bulging side and open without separating the two halves – Remove the skin, trim tubes, skewer to keep kidney open – They can be divided into 2 halves lengthwise; skin and trim

Pluck • Rules for preparation: – The lungs should be beaten vigorously to expel

Pluck • Rules for preparation: – The lungs should be beaten vigorously to expel air, and the spleen should be skinned – They should be soaked in cold water with salt for 24 hours to remove the blood – Blanch spleen and lungs in salt water for 10 minutes; Slice it thinly and fry in clarified butter – Alternately, they should be lightly poached for 1½ hours until tender and used for stuffing and sausage

Brains • Quality Points – Choose brains that are clean, light pink color, and

Brains • Quality Points – Choose brains that are clean, light pink color, and free of blood clots and stains – Brains should be firm, plump, and pinkish white – Chill well and use the same day as purchased

Brains • Preparation for Cooking – Before precooking, soak the brains in cold water

Brains • Preparation for Cooking – Before precooking, soak the brains in cold water and remove the outer membrane – Brains should be soaked in cold water until all the blood is leached away; the arteries and fibers should then be removed – Precooking is, in fact, a prerequisite to most methods of preparation and enhances the keeping quality of the brains

Brains • Preparation for Cooking – Simmer them for about 20 minutes in salted

Brains • Preparation for Cooking – Simmer them for about 20 minutes in salted water, adding 1 or 2 tablespoons of lemon juice or vinegar, and other seasonings if you desire – Another method is to simmer them in milk; this step will firm their mushy consistency for use in other recipes – The brains are rested and cooled before the next method of cooking takes place – They may be sautéed or cut in small pieces and deep fried in batter or other coatings, fried, creamed, or scrambled with eggs

Blood • Considerations for Cooking – Fresh blood straight from the animal is at

Blood • Considerations for Cooking – Fresh blood straight from the animal is at great risk for spoiling unless dealt with immediately – A little lemon juice or vinegar should be added to stop the blood from clotting during refrigeration; 1 tablespoon (15 m. L) of lemon juice per 2 quarts (1. 9 L) of blood is the recommended ratio – Store the fresh blood for no more than 2 days

Head • Quality Points – Check the neck for obvious signs of bruising and

Head • Quality Points – Check the neck for obvious signs of bruising and damaged flesh – Ensure that the windpipes have been removed – Clean the ears, nose, and mouth areas of anything that looks unclean – Wash the whole head thoroughly

Head • Preparation for Cooking – Make an incision down the center of the

Head • Preparation for Cooking – Make an incision down the center of the head from the top of the forehead to the nose of the animal – Run your knife along the meat, keeping the flesh attached to the skin but following the contour of the skull until you have completely boned the head – Take the greatest care to keep your knife facing the bone at all times in order to remove as much flesh as possible – Follow the head from top to bottom around the forehead, then around the eyes along the snout and then along the jaw

Head • Preparation for Cooking – Lay the skin out flesh side up; clean

Head • Preparation for Cooking – Lay the skin out flesh side up; clean around the ears, nose, and tongue end, removing any cartilage and sinews; remove all large fat pockets that are visible, cleaning down to the flesh – Remove the tongue and cut into strips about 3 inches by ½ inch (7. 5 cm by 1. 25 cm) and reserve – Now remove the skin by using a long firm ham knife and cutting under the flesh against the skin as if skinning a large salmon fillet

Head • Preparation for Cooking – Lay the flesh into the best rectangle you

Head • Preparation for Cooking – Lay the flesh into the best rectangle you can make from it in between 2 sheets of strong plastic wrap and lightly beat the head into a somewhat even-looking sheet – Roll this up with the tongue inside, seasoning well as you go – Tie in muslin into a galantine shape and secure with butcher’s twine – Poach for 3 hours, very gently, until fully cooked – Cool until you can handle it, and then rewrap and tie tightly to create its final shape in fresh muslin, allowing it to chill in the cooking liquid

Tripe • Cooking – Soak in acidulated water overnight and wash well the next

Tripe • Cooking – Soak in acidulated water overnight and wash well the next day in plenty of running cold water – Cut into strips about 4 inches (10 cm) long and 1 inch (2. 5 cm) wide – Braise or poach in rich court bouillon or good beef broth until tender – Add to an appropriate sauce and serve

Tails • Quality Points – Look for tails with an even distribution of meat

Tails • Quality Points – Look for tails with an even distribution of meat and fat – They should have an even coating of very white fat – They should be skinned and trimmed of excess fat • They can be bought cut into chunks through cartilage between segments of bone • They can also be boned without damaging skin; season with salt and pepper and stuff; Roll and tie with cloth and string, like a galantine, for cooking

Caul Fat • Pig’s caul fat is the lining of a pig’s stomach •

Caul Fat • Pig’s caul fat is the lining of a pig’s stomach • The excess fat is removed and can be used as lard • The remaining membrane is used as a protective wrapping for any meat item that needs to have a “natural plastic wrap” to hold it together during cooking • Soak it in salt water and then drain well before using

Caul Fat • It can be very delicate, so handle with care • It

Caul Fat • It can be very delicate, so handle with care • It will mostly disappear when cooked, except when it has been wrapped repeatedly around a food item