Friday, October 10, 2008

An Awful Lot of Offal

Kidney, hearts, and brains, oh my. It seemed like every market and butcher shop in Paris offered a bounty of offal in their perfectly pristine display cases. Offal is generally defined as all organs, and may also include an animal's head, feet, and tongue. Really the only part of the animal not on the offal list are the muscles and bones.

After my recent trip to Paris I really wish that I were a more adventurous eater. I loved to watch well-healed ladies discussing with the butcher the exact organ that they were selecting for their Friday night feasts. But, I just can't get over the fact that you are eating lungs, stomachs, and intestines. Sure, sweetbreads sound delicious, but remember that they are actually a thymus, a hormone-producing organ located in the chest. I know a lot of people who enjoy liver and onions, but I'm not one of them.

My husband, one the other hand, may be becoming an offal convert. In Austria he had not one, but two helpings of braised tongue. I recently had a bite of his foie gras. But rich creamy meat spread on toast just kind of grosses me out.

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