La Lengua de Res = Beef Tongue. Cedo and I were in Pricesmart wandering through the meat department where we saw the beef tongues. “Oh, esa es muy rica, muy muy rica!” (very very delicious). Hmmm OK, I’ll try anything once and if I don’t like it, she will be getting a gift. On the ride home I was given the instructions, twice, just to be sure I understood correctly.
There were other things that I don’t usually buy either like sliced cow stomach, sliced feet (also muy rico para la sopa, pero mucha grasa – very delicious for soup, but a lot of fat). But, today it is about the tongue.
First, it must be boiled for 5-10 minutes, and then the skin removed. That is quite a bit more difficult than one would think! (I was told if the skin isn’t removed it becomes impossibly hard and tough when cooked more) Then, make a salsa like the one for the Lomo Relleno – celery, onion, green pepper, Maggi bullion cube, garlic, and any other seasonings you like whirled in the blender. Pour this over the meat and it is ready to cook.
I was told it takes maybe 30 minutes cooking time without the pressure cooker. I used the pressure cooker and checked it after 30 minutes and it still seemed fairly tough, so I ended up cooking it for a hour. Again, our ideas of soft are different than the Panamanians who are used to a much tougher type of beef. After an hour though I thought the meat was soft and tender.
After the meat is cooked take it out of the pot, cook down the juice to thicken and decrease the liquid, slice the meat, pour the juice over it, and it’s ready to serve.
It tasted like beef! (but of course). Seriously it did not have a strange taste at all, but tasted like other cuts of beef that I am familiar with. The main difference was the slightly softer texture. I thought it was quite acceptable. Joel, however decided to pass. Either he saw it in the fridge so he knew what it was, or he didn’t like the softer texture, or both.
I don’t think I will buy this one again. It’s more expensive per pound and a fair amount of work getting the skin off. Of course also, if Joel doesn’t care for it there is no point in keeping this on our list. I’m glad I tried it though. Now I know, and just because something isn’t a common food where I’m from doesn’t mean it isn’t good to eat. I gave the rest to Cedo who pronounced it well cooked and “muy rica”.