You CAN Eat Beef Heart!

June 24, 2008 · 19 comments

beef heart

I have the pickiest palate in the world. When I tell you that 3/4# ground beef mixed with 1/4# ground beef heart is totally unrecognizable in the taste, you can believe me. What a great way to get more nutrition into your family, though! We know from this post about organ meats how healthy this can be for us, (but I still haven’t had the nerve, or should I say the stomach, to try liver).

(Find safe, pastured meats and beef tallow for frying here.)

What’s so great about beef heart?

Here is some information from the post on the organ meats phone seminar:

  • Beef heart has very concentrated levels of CoQ10, B vitamins, folic acid, Selenium, Phosphorus, Zinc, and Amino Acids that help burn fat, store energy and boost stamina and endurance.
  • More on CoQ10 in beef heart: it is highly protective against cancer and is found only in animal foods. CoQ10 is a substance present in every cell in the body and essential for cell production, we need a lot for good health and can get 40% of our daily requirement with 1 serving of heart. It protects our heart, improves problems with our gums, and has an affect on many different diseases (read more about CoQ10.)
  • Heart also has twice as much collagen and elastin – for wrinkle free skin!
  • Have you been told not to eat organ meats too much, due to the cholesterol?  Read more about cholesterol here.

You really don’t taste anything?

I’ve used the ground beef with heart in spaghetti sauce, tacos, meatloaf, and the taste is no different than regular ground beef in any of these recipes. As a matter of fact, I’m not going to buy plain ground beef at all anymore.  UPDATE:  Now we do ONLY use this ground beef for everything, including burgers, and it’s actually better tasting, more like steak, for real!

Where to get it…

Here’s where to find healthy meats/organ meats.

Have you seen these?

photo

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  • 1 Michigan Mom2three June 25, 2008 at 5:39 am

    Okay – so you get your ground beef WITH the ground heart already in it? My farm sells beef heart – they’re huge, and right in the freezer. They look like a gigantic heart, so it kind of freaks me out to think of thawing it, cutting it up and GRINDING it. ~BIG sigh. I’m totally convinced of the health benefits…… I know how good for me it would be….. I just can’t quite do it. If I could get it already ground and mixed in, that might be different.

    I’m fine dealing with the “turkey giblets” and the little heart is kind of cute even….. chop that baby up for the stuffing and I’m fine. It’s just that the beef heart is SO BIG. I could stick my finger in all those valves!!! Yikes!!!

    Shauna

    2 Kelly the Kitchen Kop June 25, 2008 at 6:09 am

    Eww, yah, that would gross me out, too. When it comes all ground up and looks and tastes just like the burger I’m eating it in, that I can do!

    We get ours at Creswick: (www.creswickfarms.com)

    3 Anna June 25, 2008 at 6:44 am

    I just got a beef heart from a local hobby farm with my beef order (also sheep and goat) and thought it was kind of cool. I checked out all the ventricles and where the blood goes through and it was like being in junior high biology again. I also have a bison heart from my recent bison order.

    I wanted the heart for grinding into my homemade raw food for the two cats (heart is also the best source of taurine, and essential nutrient for cats) but I think I’ll save some for us now.

    Thanks for the report, Kelly.

    4 green mom for Jesus June 25, 2008 at 8:28 am

    What a timely post, Kel.
    I was just going to try this mixture and wondering how yours turned out with the family.

    I’m mixing organic lamb neck in the next batch of lentil soup.

    What they don’t know won’t hurt them! :-)

    5 Michigan Mom2three June 25, 2008 at 11:02 am

    Anna – as science, I’d think it would be cool….. but to then turn around grind it and eat it…. I’m not so sure.

    Shauna

    6 Carrie T June 25, 2008 at 8:54 pm

    Kelly,

    I recently discovered heart as well. You can’t taste it at all when it’s ground; and I even served it up cubed in some chili and no one was the wiser!

    It’s smooth, lean muscle meat and with the right marinate I think it comes out just like steak. I want to try roasting one in the crock pot. I think that would be good.

    And it’s a great deal; one heart goes a long way!

    7 MommaofMany June 25, 2008 at 10:22 pm

    My husband would not be pleased if I hid heart in his meat!

    I had to laugh at your “It’s not crockpot season” line. It’s been over 100 degrees here in CA for days! Crockpot season begins early here :).

    8 Michigan Mom2three June 26, 2008 at 4:42 am

    Kelly – I’ll check with Creswick. I already order all of my pork from them through the co-op. BTW – they have some AWESOME homeade chorizo (nitrate free, etc.). I’ll check on the ground heart.

    Thanks!

    Shauna

    9 Jess June 26, 2008 at 7:51 am

    Thanks, Kelly! I included a link to this post in today’s “This Week’s Favorites” on my blog.

    I’m going to try some heart!

    10 Anna June 26, 2008 at 8:47 am

    My squeamish index has gone down quite a bit since I started preparing and feeding raw ground chicken & organs for my cats (2+ years now), as well as procuring all kinds of offal (organs, tongue, oxtail, leaf lard) from my local farm). Reading traditional references about meat and butchering, not to mention learning more about food in many cultures and eras, helps too. I love looking through meat books with color photos (The Field Guide to Meat & Hugh Fearnly-Whittingsall’s The River Cottage Meat book are great references).

    But it’s definitely a “state of mind” thing. I’m much more squeamish now about supermarket meat, imagining the pathogenic bacteria that Consumer Reports and others say is endemic to supermarket meat (conventional and organic), CAFO conditions, diseased animals, additives to the feed, fast and dangerous processing plants, etc.

    I needed the appreciation for the nutrition and tradition before making the leap from plastic supermarket trays to spending the afternoon cutting up, wrapping, and labeling for the freezer 40 + pounds of offal after the farm delivery.

    It’s been a gradual process, taking several years. When I feel unsure, I try to remember my great-grandmother and how despite her poverty, she fed her family well well from food produced on her small polycultural (that’s the trendy term) farm, and nothing went to waste. She even saved all her fat to make soap.

    Watching Survivorman on TV with my son, I realize that modern Westernized humans no longer have the vast knowledge of how to survive in nature anymore that our stone age ancestors needed and exploited to spread across the globe into many climates. While I have no illusions that I know nearly enough to survive in the wild on my own (or with anyone I know, for that matter), getting my hands on a bison or steer heart, 11 pound beef liver, kidney (strangely, not “kidney” shaped, but sheep and goat kidneys are), etc. does reassure me that I’m not quite as removed from my primal roots as I was just a few years ago.

    Hard to believe I once bought and prepared only boneless meat cuts because anything else had too much “waste” and was too much “work”. LOL!

    11 Kelly the Kitchen Kop June 26, 2008 at 3:45 pm

    Thanks Jess!

    Anna, I still have a long way to go! :)

    Amy, how did you think to use lamb neck and where did you get it?

    Shauna, Chorizo is now on my Creswick list!

    Momma, I guess I shouldn’t complain about our 80’s and humidity today, huh?!

    Carrie, what marinade do you use?

    I love all the comments! Keep ‘em coming everyone! :)

    12 Robert Beverly January 4, 2009 at 4:48 pm

    I found, surprisingly, that you can get these sliced and just grill and eat them. It tastes like sirloin, but more tender. Seriously. I got mine at the local grocery… my “recipe” is here: http://robertbeverly.com/2009/01/04/beef-hearts/

    13 Kelly January 4, 2009 at 5:31 pm

    Where can you buy sliced beef heart?!

    14 SY September 11, 2009 at 11:51 am

    I recently bought sliced beef heart at the grocery store. I dont understand the squeamishness!!! My mother boiled beef heart slices with carrots, celery, and parsley (and some salt to taste)–has to be boiled for many hours though (something like 5-6 hours until the beef heart is soft). The broth was amazingly delicious, as was the beef heart itself. The texture is soft and chewy, and the flavor is awesome!

    What is with this Puritan fear of the new and unusual in this society?

    Btw, liver isn’t bad when fried with onions, a somewhat acquired taste. Beef heart is REAALLY good though. Dont miss out!

    15 KitchenKop September 11, 2009 at 2:40 pm

    Sy, good advice! :)
    Kelly

    16 Dave October 8, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    In the article on organ meats, I do not see any mention of the high amount of cholesterol in these organs. I was told by my doctor years ago to stay away from them as I have an elevated cholesterol count. Any comment?

    17 KitchenKop October 8, 2009 at 8:52 pm

    Hi Dave,

    Yes, this drives me crazy that people are being told not to eat organ meats due to the cholesterol. Such nutrient dense foods and we’re told to avoid them or not eat too much! If cholesterol actually was the bad guy it has been made out to be, then fine. But our body NEEDS it and the whole “lipid hypothesis” has never been proven and it’s a big farce. I hope you’ll take the time to read more. Don’t believe me, look into it more and see what you think.

    Read through the posts here: http://kellythekitchenkop.com/2008/08/healthy-fats-oils.html

    Especially the ones about cholesterol toward the bottom.

    Thanks for reminding me that I should put a note about this in the post.

    Kelly

    18 JC November 5, 2009 at 4:43 am

    Beef heart has a unique, robust, almost nutty taste when eaten with ground beef.

    If you REALLY want a gourmet AND health experience, try beef heart tartare.

    You can get fresh ground or chopped beef heart from better butchers. Always go organic or biodynamic, and avoid frozen.

    19 KitchenKop November 16, 2009 at 2:27 pm

    OK, everyone, I have to close comments on this post. My spam filter is acting up and for some reason this one is getting hit like crazy lately.
    Kelly

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