Recipe For Boiled Tongue From 1907

Boiled tongue has fallen out of favor in the United States since the early 1900s, but it is still sold in some grocery stores across the country.

The recipe below was originally printed in 1907 and gives up insight into how this cut of meat was cooked long ago.

Boiled Tongue

Few things are more appetizing than boiled tongue when properly cooked. Here is an excellent recipe:

Select a tongue with as smooth skin as possible. Roughness denotes age. Wash well, trimming off any surplus fat, run a strong twine through the tip of the tongue and draw under so that it meets the root, then tie firmly in place.

If the tongue is smoked it must be soaked in clear, cold water over night. Put the tongue in a kettle, and if a fresh one cover with boiling water salted to taste. Let it cook five minutes then skim thoroughly and push back where it will boil gently, only bubbling one side of the kettle. Rapid boil means a tongue toughened instead of becoming tender. Nothing is gained by quick cooking.

If the tongue is smoked it must be put in cold water, brought slowly to the boiling point (an hour is none too long), then simmered three and a half hours, until tender. After the water in which the tongue is cooked has reached the boiling point and has been skimmed, add to it a small red pepper, a piece of onion, a small bouquet of soup herbs, a spice bag or its equivalent in powdered sweet basil, summer savory and sweet marjoram, and in case of a fresh tongue, salt to season.

When at last the tongue is tender so that it is easily pierced with a fork, take from the fire and let it cool in the liquor in which it has been cooked. Do not peel until ready to use.

If you are to serve it whole glaze, wind a paper ruche around the root interspersed with sprigs of parsley or white celery leaves. If it be sliced, arrange in overlapping circles around a platter, pile watercress in the center and garnish with nasturtium leaves and blossoms, or feathery carrot tops, parsley or even lettuce.

Serve with a tartar sauce, which is simply mayonnaise with a little chopped pickle and olive added. Smoked tongue is delicious served in an aspic border, but the fresh tongue is apt to prove insipid with aspic.

Source: Los Angeles herald. (Los Angeles [Calif.]), 20 Jan. 1907.