Thursday, January 30, 2014

Duck Tongues. Two ways. Slow Simmer and Oven Braised



YES, ducks do have tongues
YES, people DO eat them and...
YES...i DID go there.

yet quite delicious

now i see why these are considered a bar-snack or dim sum nibble in the Asian culture.  once you give in and try one you'll find yourself with a pile of 20 or so bones that you've sucked clean.  aside from the "odd-bits" factor, they are quite unique and fun to eat.  i would say it's most similar to a chicken tail or "the Pope's Nose" as my colorful 108 year old Grandmother used to call it.
SO HERE WE GO.... i cooked them two ways.  1/2 pound was slowly simmered in an Asian flavored duck stock and 1/2 was marinaded in sweet, spicy soy, ginger, star anise... then braised in the oven.  i think the slow simmer worked best for cooking, but the sauce from the braise was delicious for dipping.
next time i think i will combine the two somehow or maybe i'll try Chichi' Wang's version over at "The Nasty bits"
NOTE...this is a very "Americanized" version of duck tongues.  i do not have a wok, a pantry full of fabulous Chinese ingredients or the proper skills to throw together an authentic Asian-style duck tongues recipe, so this is what i came up with...AND IT WORKED.  i will definitely be having these again SOON.

inflation has hit the duck tongues market.  i remember when i first saw these about 2-3 years ago.  i had no idea what to do with them so i never bought them...too bad.  had i known they were this much FUN i would have purchased a bundle.  i think they were about 5.00$ a they are 16.99$ a pound must rinse

photo above is the cold water bath must do a short pre-boil
put about 7 thin slices of ginger in a pot of water, a good pinch of salt and enough water to totally cover the tongues.  bring the water to a boil and throw in the tongues.  let them boil for 2-3 minutes.  remove them, drain hot water and put them in a cold water bath to stop the cooking.

now you can cook them as you please.

1/4 cup soy
1 large T minced ginger
2 star anise
3 T brown sugar
1/2 T sambal chili garlic sauce
splash of shauxing wine
1 small scallion sliced
put tongues in marinade for 30-40 minutes.
strain tongues from marinade and put in oven safe dish.  save the marinade, but it must be boiled if you intend to use it as a sauce.

i poured some "Soy Vay" Hoisin Garlic Sauce over the tongues with a few crushed garlic cloves, a drizzle of sesame oil and added just a bit of stock so there was enough liquid to braise, but NOT boil.
(photo above is before adding the stock)
i had this in the oven, covered,  at 320 F for about 1/2 hour.  checked it at 1/2 hour.  they were still a bit chewy so i lowered to 300 F and continued for another 1/2 hour.
the end result was delicious, but i found that these tongues shrank just a bit...they were not as plump as the slow simmer batch. (example below)
slow simmer on left...marinade/braise right
2nd cooking method...

i was lucky enough to have some duck stock in my freezer.
find the recipe for Asian flavored duck stock HERE
i suppose you could use homemade chicken stock, but i wanted to get the full "duck" experience.
to the stock i added a couple of star anise, a few ginger pieces, a short stick of lemongrass (tied and slightly pounded), a little bit of garlic chili sauce and a chopped spring onion to the simmer.
bring to a boil and then to a very slow simmer.  check on them until they are done to your liking.  i wanted them fairly soft so they were in for about an hour.

they are delicious straight out of the pot.  serve with or without sauce, over noodles or deep fry to make them crispy good.  mine never made it to the fryer, but i will try this next time.
here's the weird part....
this is what you will find inside the duck tongue
the tip is flubbery and edible if cooked long enough, the flat part is hard cartilage and there is a pebble size bone at the very end.


Magda Karolina said...

OMG! I've never seen ducks tongues in Poland but they look deliciuos the way You made it ;) Fantasic ;D

Jules and Ruby said...

hi Magda !!!
so glad you stopped by to see my duck tongues. thank you so much...AND they were delicious, i tell you.

andra said...

Soo, we finally meet. I'm from Romania so I'm used to almost any kind of pig, beef, sheep, goat, poultry offal, but I have to recognize that I have never tried duck tongue. It is not available here and have never seen it in the States either.
I'm a big fan of yours though, been following you for a while now and used plenty of your recipes... keep providing us with usual or not so usual nourishment.

Valerie said...

I'm on a mission now to find duck tongues! Totally have to try this! Love the awesome and unusual recipes you come up with. Made your chicken feet recipe last year. Horrified my husband, but it was delicious lol.

Ambrosia Farms said...

that's alot of ducks! from a farmer who raised 20 ducks once to eat - love them roasted in a wood fired oven - but they are cute creatures so hard to kill.

love you photos - what camera do you use - thanks.

Jules and Ruby said...

HI ANDRA from Romania !
lucky for you to have all that farm to table goodness. i'm in Newport Beach CA and most people are a bit scared of the "odd-bits". i often shop at Asian markets to find my out of the ordinary goodies. i hope you see duck tongues somewhere at some point and get to try them. exciting you made the chicken feet! that batch in the post was really awesome because they were HUGE! did the husband ever eat one? oh well, more for you. thanks and let me know if you find some duck tongues. definitely an Asian market purchase.

Hello Ambrosia Farms. lucky you with the wood fired oven. i would do ALL my cooking in there. on a cold night i think i would jump in there. LOL. yes ducks are cute,especially when you get up close and personal like you do. bravo to farmers such as yourself and thank you for providing.

impulsively said...

YUM! I looooove duck tongues, with the cartilage and pockets of fat. I have used Chichi Wang's recipe before butI find that I don't like them deep fried very much - you should check out Cooking with Alison's recipe :)

Jules and Ruby said...

hi impulsively...sorry just found your great comment. i'm not sure i would like them fried either...they would shrink too much. right?...,but i'll check out Allison's recipe now. thanks so much

kvepalai said...

thanks, this post is great

Bob Andrews said...

Oh wow! I was kind of teed off by the word tongue, but I soldiered on and read through. After a while, I found the pictures strangely appetizing to look at, which prompted me to think that I want to try that out. Now my problem is where I can find some duck tongues in the local grocery. Hahaha! Anyway, thank you for sharing that fun novel and that appealing recipe. Happy cooking!

Bob Andrews @ Chili House

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