Sunday, April 1, 2012

Be still my yummy heart...

I'm at the final leg of wrestling with this silly plague. Last night, I was in need of something to boost my system and get healthy once and for all. You can keep your echinacea, your tinny flavoured zinc tablets, your chalky Vitamin C lozenges and your wimpy herbal teas.

Well, not the whole heart. But a good chunk of it :)

I am currently having a love affair with reindeer meat.

I have a couple of reindeer hearts hoared in my frozen meat stash. At $5 a heart, they are the cheapest cut of meat up here. And it's from a local free range herd. Win-Win!

Technically, the heart is not an organ meat. It's a muscle, a beautiful, finely grained, lean muscle.
I trimmed all the excess fat and gristly parts and gave it to the pups'.
gristly top of the heart

The rest I sliced into 1/2 - 1/3 inch slices.

I was tempted to marinade or do a spice crust or make a wine reduction but I opted for a simple dusting of salt and pepper and seared the pieces.
I wanted taste the flavour of the heart without adulteration. 

The slabs of heart were seared (in bacon fat, of course) for about 2 minutes on each side over medium high heat. I wanted it medium rare. For such a lean cut of meat, you don't want cooked anymore or else risk a dinner of shoe soles. You want to still see the muscle fibres slightly quivering with echoes of their former lub dub lub dub

Here's Lyra about to chow down on some raw reindeer heart and kibble (yep, spoiled stinking rotten):

Here's my plate of reindeer heart with roasted cauliflower and shichimi yams:
Yeah, that's all for me. I'm a growing girl :P
The reindeer heart was done just right with mild gamey flavour. The finely-grained meat was tender enough to cut easily with a butter knife. I did add a dollop of horseradish and whole grain mustard as condiments to my plate. Nice and simple.

That said, I could see this meat doing really well in a garlic and fresh herb marinade and grilled on the bbq. Another future experiment would be reindeer heart satay. The walls of the hearts could easily be seperated with sliced into thin strips for that.

I'm also wondering if I could utlitize the chambers of the heart for stuffing other yumminess into it and baking or braising it. Oh, the possibilities!

For dessert, sickly sweet photos of dear, dashingly handsome, darling husband snuggling with Loulou:

Have a yummy week!

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