Offal -- you either love it or hate it - very few people are indifferent about it. Most English speakers are terrified of touching it, let alone cooking it, let along eating it.
The French, however, treat it as a great delicacy.
The French tradition even distinguishes between "noble" and "unnoble" offal:
- thyroid glands;
- kidney (usually sold fresh.)
Note that in the above list, the heart is the only one that is a muscle.
- tail (often sold cooked in France.)
The French also categorize in other ways:
White offal (abats blancs):
- ears from pigs or calves;
- feet and head of lamb, mutton, pig, beef and calf;
- tripe from beef or mutton.
Red offal (abats rouges):
- beef liver;
- kidneys from lamb, mutton, ram or ox;
- muzzle of beef or pork;
- spinal marrow (Amourette);
- tail (particularly beef);
- testicals from lamb, mutton, ram or ox;
- thyroid glands from lamb, calf;
Fresh offal should have no smell to it, and be glossy and bright. If it's not fresh, it can have a surface that looks dry, mottled or dull, and can have a strong smell.
Offal should be cooked on the day it was purchased -- if it was purchased absolutely fresh, it can be stored in fridge overnight for use next day.
Many recipes consequently appeared for them, particularly government-sponsored recipes in the hopes of encouraging people to eat it.
Irvine, Chris. Offal makes a comeback in British dining. London: The Daily Telegraph. 11 September 2008.
OffalAmourette; Beef Marrow; Calves' Fry; Heart; Kidney; Lamb's Fry; Liver; Marrowbone; Mesentery; Muggety Pie; Offal; Ox Palate; Oxtails; Pluck; Pork Maw; Sweetbreads; Tongue; Tripe
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