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Nov 16, 2010 06:19 PM

I hate organ meat

There I said it. I love to cook and I like to try different foods, but can't stomach organ meat. When in Palermo Italy we did a market tour and cooking class. Part of the tour was a taste of some odd little fatty bits in a box from under a towel.Very sketchy. A piece of wax paper was put in your hand. The mans hand dove under the towel and out came a handful of fat, meat and ??? something else. Apparently it's rendered off of the bones after the butcher has done with them. It tasted alright, but it's texture was off putting, yet I was still able to finish what I was given. Next we had a lung and spleen sandwhich with a local cheese (bad of me, but can't remember the name) I was game and took a big bite...chewed once, twice and the nasty flavor flooded my mouth and my throat closed. I had to ask, with a mouthful of food, if they would be offended if I spit it out? Our guide released me and I jettisoned the nasty bits. Bourdain would have kicked my ass.

I'm sorry I don't like the taste. I like the idea of nose to tail, at least the part that doesn't waste any of the animal. I am considering raising a couple of pigs. I really don't want to waste any of it. Guess I'll need to find someone that will take what I can't stomach.

Is there anyone out there that hated organ meat that found a way to embrace it?


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    1. re: Tripeler

      Which is pretty funny, given your site name! I assumed you're a serious tripe lover.

        1. re: linguafood

          Not exactly - that's Tripel. There's also German Trippelbock. That may be where Tripeler took his name form but it always made me think of tripe.

          1. re: BobB

            Aha! No wonder I got that wrong. Belgian beer is not my forte, nor my pleasure. German beer pretty much all the way - save for Trippelbock. Doppelbock is enough for me, and not a favorite either.

        2. re: BobB

          Can't stand tripe. The name is after Tripel, my favorite style of Belgian beer.

        3. re: Tripeler

          Are you saying that you haven't been to any of the motsu or horumon places in Japan? I really like the many places that specialize in offal dishes in Japan, not only because of the way they're prepared, but because it doesn't taste like the bitter, iodine-y versions I've had in the US. It might have to do with the way wagyu cattle are raised in Japan that affects how the offal meats taste, but if you're willing to give it another try, I would say you're in the right place to get some really good tasting offal meat.

          1. re: E Eto

            Believe me, I have tried several times.
            Just don't like it.

        4. The term 'organ meat' is so general, don't you think? I've had beef heart that could simply pass for beef. Are you talking about liver? Sweetbreads (the thymus gland)? Brains? I'm sure you mean 'kidney', but what about intestine or chicken gizzard? Tripe? Tongue? How about pig snout, ears, or feet?

          I grew up in a household that ate beef something like 7 nights a week. Monday night was steak, Tuesday was meatballs, Wednesday was brisket, Thursday was veal cultlets, Friday was swiss steak (don't ask), Saturday was meatloaf, and Sunday was chicken hash.

          I now eat almost all animal parts, mostly at hole-in-the-wall exotic places. I have consistently had good slabs of tongue at Bolivian restuarants, and some really good tripe and tendon in Sichuan, and Italian places, and various other parts I've liked upon occasion.

          If someone boiled up some intestines I'm pretty sure it would be unappealing to me, but to have them flavor a stew? Now that could be interesting....

          2 Replies
          1. re: Steve

            Heart, liver, kidney, brain, spleen, lung, intestine. For the most part it is internal organs.

            I have had and enjoyed tongue. Cheeks are not internal organs and I've never had sweet bread (pancreas?)

            Maybe it's preperation?


            1. re: JuniorBalloon

              Liver is beloved by many (including me). Most people interested in food know about and like French paté, so I think liver is acceptable in some form even to people who have food fears.

              Heart should not be much of a major taste problem for anyone as it is not all that far from beef. I don't know many people who eat tripe plain, but cooked with a sauce can be great. Intestines and many other parts can be great for flavoring and texture, but again are not too exciting plain. I have definitely talked with people who grew up eating intestines and crave them (no question of economic necessity).

              Can't say I've ever eaten or seen on a menu a nice plate of steamed spleen.

              Had a really good plate of gizzards at a Sichuan restaurant recently.

              I would say from my experience that even people who say they don't like organ meats can find some love depending on their willingness and faced with a preparation in which the meat is used as a flavoring agent rather than the featured ingredient.

              As hillfood implies below, anyone who eats sausage may already be enjoying organ meat without realizing it.

              Lastly, there is strength in numbers. I get together regularly with other Chowhounds for group meals. When twelve adventurous people get together, it's easier to explore organ meats and find something you like.

          2. I can't eat any of it either. And I have tried. Not everything, but enough.

            1. I'm an unabashed organ meat eater. I think that there's almost nothing tastier than well prepared veal sweetbreads or beef tongue. Beef cheeks are delicious as well. I got my husband to enjoy beef tongue when I cooked it in a sweet tomato sauce and, in his words, it was "unidentifiable" as tongue (by sight, I mean - he loved the taste and texture, just couldn't handle seeing the tongue on his plate)

              1. No it's disgusting! For me it often both the taste and the texture that bother me. I have tried it many times since I grew up with a dad who loved all things organ. I have decided that life is just too short to eat anything that you don't like. For those who do enjoy it, more power to you, you can have my share!