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Grilled Ox Tongue with Salsa Verde

Never grilled an ox tongue? Call yourself a man?

In fairness neither had we until we spoke to Stephen Gadd, head chef of the delightful Rookery in Clapham, South London, to find out how...

Method

"Soak the ox tongue in cold water for a good few hours, preferably overnight. The next day bring the tongue to the boil, skimming any scum that comes to the surface. When boiling, turn the heat down to a simmer and add an onion, carrot and a few smashed up garlic cloves and allow to cook for a few hours. If you can insert a sharp skewer into the tongue and remove it without resistance, it's cooked. Leave the tongue to cool in the cooking liqueur.

"To make the verde, finely chop all the other ingredients, then add the olive oil, the mustard and the vinegar (save a little to dress the watercress, have a taste and then season if need be. Keep to one side until needed).

"When the tongue is cool enough to handle, peel back the tough outer skin, if cooked correctly it should come of with ease. Slice the tongue, you may find it easier to cut it in half and then slice it. Once sliced, season your tongue with a little salt and a splash of oil and place on a pre-heated grill or griddle pan, allow the tongue to crisp up and then turn over and crisp the other side.

"Place the griddled tongue on four plates, spoon over the salsa verde, dress the watercress with a little good olive oil and vinegar and place on top."

The Dish

"The reason why I like this dish so much is that tongue is so under used and is so tasty, when boiled it is lovely but as soon as the tongue hits a hot pan and starts crisping up it just becomes one of the nicest parts of the animal, melting tender and so much flavour with very little fat. The sauce helps to bring out the meatiness and because the tongue is rich, the salsa helps to cut through dish. The watercress adds some texture and a little bit of peppery flavour that beef works brilliantly with. The cost of the dish is minimal so again proving that the great British Beef Tongue is one of the cuts to be using."

Ingredients

1 Ox Tongue

1 bunch watercress

Half a bunch flat leaf parsley

A quarter of a bunch mint

1 clove garlic

1 tbsp Dijon mustard

4 anchovy fillets

2 tbsp capers

120ml olive oil

15ml vinegar

salt and pepper

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