Saturday, May 16, 2009
It just so happens my Mom now reads my blog, and of course the question comes up, why no Cuban food? *bows head* You see my Mom was born and raised in Cuba, my Dad is of Mexican decent so I grew up with the fine cuisines from both countries. During special occasions while I was growing up it was all about the Cuban dishes. Cuban Chicken, Fricase de pollo, Congri, Ropa Vieja, Platanos Maduros, and Lengua were the norm.
A funny thing about Lengua is for the longest time I did not know what it was. I really didn't put two and two together until I was about 8 years old. My best friend Kirk and I were rummaging through the cabinets looking for snacks as my mom was just starting the Lengua preparation. This big huge cow tongue was sitting on kitchen counter and we totally freaked out. By that time I loved the dish so much I didn't mind, but I don't think Kirk came over to eat much after that.
This past Mothers day I followed Mom around the kitchen and tried to capture the recipe for you. It was very challenging because Mom does not measure or time anything, so I did my best to capture one of my favorite traditional Cuban dishes.
3-4 lb Beef Tongue
6 Roma Tomatoes or 6-8 ounces of canned of tomato Sauce (Mom prefers the canned tomato sauce)
1 Red Pepper
1 Yellow Pepper
1 Green Pepper
1/2 Cup Olives
6 Garlic Cloves, crushed
4 tablespoons Olive Oil
2 teaspoons capers
1 tablespoon caper juice
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 Bay Leaves
2 Tablespoons Vinegar
Salt to taste
Clean the tongue thoroughly and place in pressure cooker with just enough water to cover the tongue. Add one tablespoon of salt, cover, and boil for approximately one hour.
Cut onions and peppers
When tongue is ready, pierce the thickest part with a knife, it should enter easily when the tongue has cooked and should no longer be pink. Peal skin off, trim fat, and cut into 1/2-inch slices.
Saute onions and peppers in 4 tablespoons of olive oil and add 2 teaspoons of salt. Add rest of ingredients listed.
Add tomato sauce
Add slices of tongue and cover on medium heat for 30-45 minutes,season to taste with salt and pepper.
We paired the lengua with arroz blanco (white rice) and Mojitos.
I hope you enjoy this recipe its been passed on for generations in my family.
Cuban Style Lengua de Res Recipe
Labels: Traditional Cuban Cooking