How was your Christmas? I hope it was filled with family, friends and food!
As it can be a pricey cut of meat and it takes hours to tenderize, lengua is more of a special occasion than an everyday dinner fare. But since it is my personal favorite, over the choicest steaks even, I’ve taken a habit on weekends of simmering a piece of tongue or two while I am out and about with other household chores. I cut the cooked tongue into serving slices, portion the pieces in resealable plastic bags and store them in the freezer for the days I want to enjoy a plateful of my best-loved tacos de lengua, lengua in mushroom sauce and this lengua estofado.
- 3 pounds beef tongue
- 1 small onion peeled and quartered
- 1 head garlic peeled and crushed
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon pepper corns
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 1/4 cup oil
- 2 medium potatoes peeled and sliced into 1/2-inch thick
- 1 4 ounces can button mushrooms, drained
- 1 small onion peeled and chopped
- 2 cloves garlic peeled and minced
- 1 cup tomato sauce
- 1 cup reserved broth
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a deep pot over medium heat, combine beef tongue and enough water to cover. Bring to a boil for about 10 to 15 minutes, skimming scum that may float to top. Drain tongue and rinse well. Discard liquid and wash pot.
- Return tongue to pot and add enough water to cover. Add onions, garlic, bay leaves, peppercorns and salt. Over medium heat, bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover and simmer for about 4 to 5 hours or until meat is fork-tender. Add more water as needed during cooking to cover tongue. Drain from liquid, reserving 1 cup of the broth. Strain and discard aromatics. Allow tongue to slightly cool and refrigerate for about 1 to 2 hours or until completely cooled (this will make slicing the tongue easier). Peel the skin and cut meat diagonally into 1/2-inch slices.
- In a skillet over medium heat, heat oil. Add potatoes and cook until lightly browned and cooked through. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels.
- Remove excess oil from pan leaving about 2 tablespoons. Add mushrooms and cook for about 1 minute. Remove from pan and set aside.
- Add the chopped onions and minced garlic and cook until limp. Add tongue and cook for about 3 to 4 minutes or until lightly browned. Add tomato sauce, reserved broth and soy sauce, stirring well to combine. Bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover and continue to cook for about 20 to 30 minutes or until sauce is reduced. Add sugar and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Add potatoes and mushrooms and continue to cook for about 2 to 3 minutes or until heated through. Serve hot.