Heart

Heart

By
From
Encyclopedia of Food and Cookery

Heart has a mild flavour somewhat like liver, although not so pronounced in taste. The flesh is lean and dry with a close texture. The most tender hearts are those from lambs, pigs and calves, while ox heart needs longer, slower cooking. Hearts can be stuffed and baked, casseroled or sautéed.

Basic preparation: Cut away the veins and arteries with a sharp pair of scissors and trim off the fat. Wash well in cold running water. Cover with warm water with the addition of 1 tablespoon vinegar to 500 ml water. Soak for at least 3 hours, or overnight if using ox heart. Change the water several times. Drain, rinse and dry before proceeding with recipe.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
see method for ingredients
Apple, prune and nut stuffing

Method

  1. Baked stuffed heart: Use 4 lambs’ hearts or 1 ox heart prepared as above. Make apple, prune and nut stuffing, fill heart cavities and sew up with a needle and thread. Put hearts in a baking dish with 250 ml stock. Cover with buttered foil and bake in a preheated moderate oven (180°C) for 1½–2 hours for lambs’ hearts and 2–2½ hours for ox heart, basting often with juices and extra 250 ml stock. When cooked, make a gravy with pan juices thickened with flour, and serve with redcurrant jelly and mashed potatoes. Serves 4.
  2. Sautéed heart: Prepare 4 lambs’ hearts as above. Cut into 1 cm slices and sauté in 3 tablespoons butter and 1 tablespoon oil. Add 2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary, or 1 teaspoon dried, and salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cook over gentle heat, stirring, for 10–12 minutes. Remove from heat, place on a warm platter, sprinkle with 100 g buttered toasted breadcrumbs and serve with a fruit chutney. Serves 4–6.
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