Beef Heart: Adventures in Offal

Beef Heart... It's what's for dinner!!!!!
Beef Heart… It’s what’s for dinner!!!!!

Recently I have been cooking through Tim Ferriss’s 4 Hour Chef.  While some of it has not been necessary it has taught me some new techniques and got me cooking with some new ingredients that I wouldn’t have used otherwise.  Thus my reason for my foray into taking beef heart for a spin.  Other than this beef heart, my cooking experience with offal has been limited.  Although I try to eat just about every unusual thing that I come across, on including a terrible Costa Rican bus stop tripe experience, offal as an ingredient has not been something that I have delved into until here recently. My only previous experience was a rather good result making some chicken liver pate. (Recipe also from 4 hour chef)


Cooking the heart was the easy part. Butchering it on the other hand was a daunting task.  First off it was massive!  Weighing in at an impressive 4.43 lbs. this was by far the largest hunk of meat that I’ve ever dug my knife into. Adding to the difficulty were the extra bits to cut around, ventricles and the what not. In the 4 hour Chef, Tim does give a couple pictures diagraming the proper way to cut the heart in order to cut some desirable filets from the heart.  But….


Lets just say I butchered the butchering.


Once I managed to cut a few edible fillets from the heart I threw it in the simple marinade provided by the book for about 30 minutes. After the marination I threw it in Sundance (My largest cast iron skillet.) with olive oil and cooked it till medium rare, about 2 minutes on each side.  If you’ve cooked a steak with any kind of proficiency you will be fine sauteing up some heart filets. After cooking I deglazed the pan with some white wine and served the filets up with some asparagus on the side and paired it with a glass of Malbec. (Not the best wine pairing but Malbec is a personal favorite varietal.)


All in all this was a simple process and would be an easy foray for any home cook into cooking offal. The taste was reminiscent of venison. The texture was a little more rubbery than steak.  Would I cook it again? Absolutely. More than likely trying different marinades and preps in the future. Obviously I didn’t use all 4 pounds of the heart, so I froze the remainder and plan to use it in an upcoming chili.



1 Beef Heart

Salt and Pepper


3 Garlic Cloves

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Lemon Juice

White Wine




Slice out some filets from the beef heart.  Then set them in a marinade of thyme, minced garlic, olive oil, and lemon juice for 30 minutes.  After marination saute filets in skillet for about 2-3 minutes on each side.  Deglaze the pan with the white wine and serve.

Special thanks to Goose the Market for hooking me up with a beautiful beef heart. As well as 4 Hour Chef for the recipe which I modified for the lack of fresh thyme.


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