3 Ways to Cook Ox Tongue

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3 Ways to Cook Ox Tongue
3 Ways to Cook Ox Tongue

Ox tongue is an excellent and nutritious meat option that can feed an entire family without spending too much. Furthermore, the low cost does not mean that it is not a good quality meat. In fact, its intense flavor made it a luxury item in times of less queasy palates. When you learn to prepare it properly, the language can even become the secret of your cooking.


plain ox tongue

  • A small ox tongue (approximately 1.5 kg)
  • peppercorns
  • Bay leaf (or other herbs)
  • Onion and carrots (or other vegetables)
  • Optional: wheat flour or a packet of onion soup to thicken the sauce

Tongue tacos

  • A small ox tongue (approximately 1.5 kg)
  • Onion, carrots, herbs of your choice
  • lard or oil
  • Green sauce
  • corn tortillas

Tongue with raisin sauce

  • An ox tongue (approximately 1.8 kg)
  • two onions
  • two sliced ​​carrots
  • A celery stalk (with the leaves) sliced
  • a crushed garlic clove
  • Two tablespoons (30 ml) of butter
  • 1/3 cup (80 ml) of raisins
  • Three tablespoons (45 ml) of chopped almonds
  • 1/3 cup (80 ml) of white wine vinegar
  • One tablespoon of tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup of Madeira wine
  • 2/3 cup of cooked beef tongue broth
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Method 1 of 3: Plain Boiled Ox Tongue

Cook Beef Tongue Step 1

Step 1. Buy the language

Larger ones can take a long time to cook, so choose the smallest one you can find, which weighs around 1.5 kg preferably. The tongue has a short shelf life, so buy one fresh or frozen from a reputable butcher (if it's frozen, thaw it in the fridge so there's no danger of spoiling).

  • Some languages ​​also come with tonsils and fat from the beginning of the organ. This part is edible once cooked, but not everyone likes its soft, greasy texture. You can remove this part at home (before or after cooking), or look for a precut tongue "Swiss way".
  • Tongue cured in brine gives a refined taste and can be prepared in the same way as fresh tongue.
Cook Beef Tongue Step 2

Step 2. Clean your tongue

Place it in a clean sink and scrub it well under running water. Clean until her surface is free of any blood or dirt.

Several recipes recommend soaking the tongue in cold water for an hour or two, changing the water if it becomes cloudy. Usually, the tongue is already sold clean and you can skip this step, but this technique can leave the taste fresher

Cook Beef Tongue Step 3

Step 3. Prepare the broth

Fill a large pot with chicken or beef stock, or lightly salted water. Add vegetables and herbs to taste. One or two onions, two bay leaves, peppercorns and carrots make a good, simple base. Feel free to add other ingredients such as oregano, rosemary, garlic or peppers. Bring to a boil over high heat.

  • Use a pressure cooker to speed up the process.
  • If you want to make a thicker sauce to serve with your tongue, add four packets of French Onion Soup.
Cook Beef Tongue Step 4

Step 4. Insert the tongue

Put your tongue in the broth and cover the pan. Bring to the boil again and then lower to a simmer.

Leave the tongue completely submerged in this broth. You may need to add more water or put a steaming basket to weigh it on

Cook Beef Tongue Step 5

Step 5. Cook until tender

The tongue is ready when it turns white and when its thickest part can be easily pierced with a knife. Overall, it takes between 50 and 60 minutes for every 450 grams of meat.

  • A tongue that is cooked quickly or cooked less than necessary acquires an unpleasant taste. If you have time, it is better to sin by being overly careful: let it simmer for another hour or two.
  • If using a pressure cooker, heat it until it starts to release steam. Reduce to medium heat and cook for another 10 to 15 minutes for every 450 grams of meat. Allow to cool until all steam comes out on its own.
Cook Beef Tongue Step 6

Step 6. Remove the skin from the tongue while it is hot

Pass it to a plate with the help of a tongs. Wait for it to cool until you can touch it, then cut the whitish layer long with a sharp knife. Peel this layer off with your fingers, using the knife when necessary (this layer is technically edible but has an unpleasant taste and texture).

  • It is much more difficult to remove the skin once the tongue has cooled down. However, if it is already at room temperature, it might be a good idea to dip it in ice water.
  • Reserve the broth to make a tasty soup or sauce.
Cook Beef Tongue Step 7

Step 7. Cut the meat into slices approximately 0.5 cm

Cut the slices diagonally with a sharp knife and serve them with green sauce, in a sandwich with brown mustard and green leaves, or bake for another half hour with roasted potatoes. There's a lot of meat on the tongue, so consider saving a few pieces for grilling or experimenting with the recipes below.

  • If the meat is tough, it is undercooked. Return the tongue to the broth and continue cooking.
  • You can easily modify the meat broth by adding wheat flour.
Cook Beef Tongue Step 8

Step 8. Store leftovers in the refrigerator

The cooked tongue can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for another five days.

Method 2 of 3: Tongue Tacos

Cook Beef Tongue Step 9

Step 1. Clean and cook the tongue

It needs a long and time-consuming cooking process to make it soft. See above for the right way to clean your tongue and then cook it in salt water for at least an hour for every pound of meat.

  • For a flavor boost, add onions, carrots, garlic, bay leaves and/or your favorite pepper.
  • Check the language every hour or so. It may be necessary to add more water to keep it covered.
Cook Beef Tongue Step 10

Step 2. Make or buy a green sauce.

You have plenty of time to prepare your own sauce while the meat cooks. Just add tomatoes with pepper, chopped onion, garlic, cilantro, lemon and salt. Stir until the sauce is smooth and a little thick (for quantities and additional details, see the recipe on the link).

Cook Beef Tongue Step 11

Step 3. Remove the skin and cut the tongue

As soon as you can pierce the thickest part with a sharp knife, remove it from the water with a tongs. When it has cooled down and you can handle it (but is still relatively warm), cut the white outer layer and remove it with your fingers. Slice it into pieces of about 1.25 cm to make the clubs.

Cook Beef Tongue Step 12

Step 4. Fry strips or grill until crisp

The flesh of the tongue is greasy and is delicious with a crunchy crust on the outside. Add a generous amount of oil or lard to a pan, approximately 3 tablespoons (45 ml) for every six slices, and heat until cracked. Add the tongue slices and fry them until golden and crispy on all sides, turning them over and over.

  • If using a grill, broil the pieces in a generous amount of olive oil and heat them at 220°C on the grill for 10 to 15 minutes, turning once.
  • If you prefer a healthier option, just brown the slices in a small amount of oil and then cook them in the green sauce for a few minutes.
Cook Beef Tongue Step 13

Step 5. Serve with corn tortillas

Set up a platter with slices of beef tongue, tortillas and green sauce for your guests to assemble their own tacos. You can also add your favorite taco toppings such as lemon and cilantro.

Method 3 of 3: Beef Tongue with Raisin Sauce

Cook Beef Tongue Step 14

Step 1. Clean and cook the ox tongue

Clean it as described in the simple recipe. Place the tongue in a pan of hot water along with an onion, two carrots, a stalk of celery and a clove of garlic. Boil your tongue for about an hour for every pound until you can skewer the thickest part of it with a knife.

  • Chop all the vegetables into thick slices, remove the celery leaves and crush the garlic clove.
  • This preparation is similar to the basic recipe preparation above, which is how all ox tongue recipes start. Consult that method if you have any questions.
Cook Beef Tongue Step 15

Step 2. Remove the skin from the tongue

Remove the tongue from the boil with a tongs. Remove the white skin as soon as the tongue is at a good temperature for handling. While hot, this skin should come off easily, with a few sharp knife incisions.

Cook Beef Tongue Step 16

Step 3. Saute the raisins, almonds and remaining onion

Melt 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of butter in a pan. Chop and add the other onion along with 1/3 cup (80 ml) of raisins and 3 tablespoons (45 ml) of chopped almonds. Stir occasionally during heating.

Cook Beef Tongue Step 17

Step 4. Place the rest of the ingredients in this pan

Once the almonds are browned, mix together 1/3 cup (80 ml) of white wine vinegar and 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of tomato paste. Add 1/3 cup (80ml) of Madeira wine and 2/3 cup (160ml) of the broth from the tongue pan. Boil for about three minutes to reduce a little.

Cook Beef Tongue Step 18

Step 5. Cut the beef tongue into slices and serve with the sauce

Cut it into thin slices and pour the raisin sauce over them. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Cook Beef Tongue Final

Step 6. Finished


  • Slices at the back of the tongue are more nutritious and more fatty than those at the tip.
  • If you buy the tongue from a reputable butcher, all its parts can be consumed. Feel free to remove any gristle or sticky substance you notice, but be careful not to remove too much meat that is good for consumption.
  • The broth may end up tasting stronger than usual because of the nutritious and greasy nature of the tongue. Add it to portions in moderation.


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