Tasty pressed beef tongue with tomato salad
( SERVES 6 )
If you’re going to eat meat, offal and unusual cuts should not be overlooked.
- Place the tongue in a large saucepan and cover with water. Peel and chop the onion, garlic and carrot and add to the pan with the herbs, peppercorns and vinegar. Bring the liquid to a gentle simmer. Cover the saucepan with a lid and leave to simmer for 3-4 hours. Check frequently to ensure the tongue is covered with water throughout the cooking. Turn off the heat, and let the tongue cool for a few minutes in the liquid.
- When it is still hot but cool enough to handle (rubber gloves help), remove the tongue to a chopping board and carefully peel off the tough skin. Take special care around the tip, as the meat can tear easily. Curl the skinned tongue into a round and press down into a small stainless-steel bowl. Push a small saucer or plate onto the surface of the meat to compress it, then top with something heavy like a large jar (I use the solid bowl of my mortar and pestle) to weight it down. Leave to cool completely. It will keep refrigerated for several days. Refrigerate the pressed tongue until ready to serve.
- Cut into thin slices horizontally across the tongue and serve with steamed new potatoes, a tomato and basil salad dressed with a mustardy vinaigrette, and a spicy chutney.