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Different Tripe styles

ZeTerroir Feb 18, 2009 10:31 AM

I live in the Dallas area and went to my local taqueria for lunch today. As I generally enjoy tripe in soup and Pho and whatnot I decided to give the tripas taco a shot (along with my standard lingua and pastor tacos). This tripe seemed to be pan fried perhaps tossed with a bit of flour, but not battered. It was for the most part flat, and nondescript. The taste was quite literally like the smell you get when you stick your nose down into a freshly opened bag of dry dog food. Not thats necessarily bad, but it was exactly like that, not kind of like it, or a hint of it, it was Dog chow smell teste. Very fatty mouth feel as well. I finished it but I dont know that I would order it again. It was cut into fatty brown-beige squares and strips.

Now I cant eat Pho without tripe. The tripe is delicate, milk white, cripsy, clean with just a slight gamey note. The shape is quite different too - spindly, almost tentacle/web like. No dog food smell flavor either.

What, other than the obvious difference in the cooking technique is the big difference here? Why the dog food smell taste in one and not the other? Does boiling vs. pan frying remove that taste characteristic (obviously it changes the texture)? Perhaps I am not a huge fan of tripe unless it has the majority of its characteristics boiled out. :-) What about the difference in shape between the two? Is the dog food smell taste normal? I am burping milk bone smell as I type this. ha.

  1. luckyfatima Feb 19, 2009 09:18 AM

    taco de tripa is my favorite variety. I though they pressure cookered it first to soften, then fried it and seasoned it. so you get a spicy, chewy and soft inside, crispy outside texture. I have never had it with a bad smell. I never realized they were actually intestines, either.

    1. h
      huaqiao Feb 18, 2009 12:34 PM

      I eat tripe in all 3 forms pretty often, but it's normally just a difference in texture. I don't find that any particular form has a particularly off-putting aroma. It's mostly just a texture thing. Maybe you just happened to get a bad batch?

      I don't usually get tripas tacos because I don't like squishy in my tacos. When I lived in Santa Monica, though, I remember the taco truck there would fry the tripe up till they were crispy on the outside. Now that was good! But since then, at other places I've just gotten them squishy which I don't like as much.

      2 Replies
      1. re: huaqiao
        h
        huaqiao Feb 18, 2009 01:25 PM

        Ah, upon further reading it turns out that tripas are beef intestines and not tripe. That might explain your issue. Intestines do have a stronger odor than tripe. They're so good when fried up crispy, though!

        1. re: huaqiao
          ZeTerroir Feb 18, 2009 01:28 PM

          Well that would explain it.. :-) thanks!

      2. r
        RicRios Feb 18, 2009 11:50 AM

        Voilà, old post with all you wanted to know about tripe and were afraid to ask:

        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/454961

        1 Reply
        1. re: RicRios
          ZeTerroir Feb 18, 2009 12:13 PM

          That is pretty thorough. Looks like I prefer book tripe.

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