Beef tongue in Madeira sauce that's a real delicacy. Tender stewed beef tongue, sliced and simmered in a flavorful broth. Served with a delicious Madeira sauce, made without packets and pouches, that is savory with a hint of sweetness. This is a delightful recipe with great flavor for an elegant dinner.
Beef Tongue in Madeira Sauce
I favor eating the whole cow (and not throwing away good parts of it). And sometimes you find true gems like this beef tongue recipe. It is very well known in Flanders (Belgium), where it was, until recent times, popular as a dish at a festive buffet. Some think that a beef tongue is one of the organ meats, but it is more muscle meat. The cooked tongue is tender, got a soft texture, and has a high-fat content.
I served the beef tongue with a savory French sauce with a bit of sweetness: Madeira sauce. A full flavor from the mushrooms, combined with a rich tomato sauce flavored with Madeira wine. This sauce combines wonderfully with the soft taste of the beef tongue. Very tasty!
What do you need for Boiled Beef Tongue with Madeira Sauce?
To prepare this Beef tongue in Madeira Sauce, you need the following ingredients. You can find the correct amounts in the recipe card at the bottom of the blog.
Ingredients Braised Beef Tongue
- Beef tongue —The cow tongue (or ox tongue) is surprisingly tender muscle meat due to its high fat content. When cooked, the tongue meat has a mild taste. Considered a delicacy. It's very popular in Flanders. It can also be replaced by a veal tongue (which is somewhat smaller).
- Celery, onion, leek, and carrot—Seasonings of the broth.
Ingredients Madeira sauce
- Mushrooms—You can use white or chestnut mushrooms for this recipe. The latter is a bit firmer and has a nutty taste.
- Flour—To thicken the sauce slightly. By dusting the vegetables with flour and then lightly frying, you lose the raw flour taste, and you don't get any lumps in the sauce.
- Carrot, onion, tomatoes, and celery—Vegetables for flavoring the sauce.
- Thyme, bay leaf, and parsley—Herbs for flavoring the Madeira sauce.
- Tomato Paste—To deepen the flavor. But make sure you use it properly. To give it its delicious rich, and slightly sweet taste, you need to fry it for at least 2 minutes.
- Madeira—A Portuguese wine made on the island of Madeira. Among other things, a sweet taste with caramel, peach, and burnt sugar aromas. Often used as a dessert wine, but also used in cooking.
- Stock—Use the broth you get when stewing the beef tongue; it goes wonderfully with this recipe. But you can also use beef stock.
How to prepare Tongue in Madeira Wine Sauce
You can find a printable recipe with a step-by-step description at the bottom of this blog.
Prepare Braised Beef Tongue
- Soak the beef tongue in salted cool water overnight. Add enough water; the meat must be about 1 inch (2.54 cm) under the water level. This will remove the impurities from the tongue. The next day, take the tongue out of the water and rinse it under running water. Fill a pan with cold water and salt. Place the beef tongue in this and bring it to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove the tongue from the water and discard the water. Place the meat in a clean pan of fresh water.
- Add the vegetables to the water and bring them to a boil. Lower the heat and put a lid on the pan. Simmer for 3-4 hours until the tongue is cooked.
- Remove the tongue from the broth and rinse under cold running water. Peel the tongue by removing the skin.
- Pat the meat dry and cut it into thin slices about ¼ inch (0.5 cm) thick.
Make Homemade Madeira Sauce
- Melt butter in the pan and add carrot, onion, celery slices, and tomato paste. Stir-fry for three minutes. Then add the flour and fry for another two minutes.
- Add the tomatoes, parsley, thyme, and bay leaf to the sauce. Also, add the broth. Bring to a boil and then simmer for about 15 minutes until the vegetables are tender.
- Meanwhile, fry the mushrooms in the butter for about 10 minutes, until golden brown. Pour the Madeira wine into the mushrooms and boil to evaporate the alcohol, about 2 minutes. Then turn the heat down.
- Put the mixed vegetable sauce through a sieve, press everything well so that you catch the flavors, and add that to the mushrooms. Warm, taste and season with salt and pepper.
Tips, Substitutions, and Variations
- Check whether the tongue is done by cutting the tip of the tongue. If it is cooked, then the rest of the beef is also ready.
- Do you think a whole beef tongue is too big? Then use veal tongues, which are a bit smaller.
- Do children attend dinner? Then do not add the Madeira to the mushrooms, but add the sieved tomato sauce. Then scoop out a portion for the children and mix the Madeira wine in the remaining sauce. Bring to a boil again so that the alcohol evaporates.
- Fry the tomato paste and flour for at least two minutes. This way, the tomato paste becomes a bit sweeter, and baking the flour ensures that the raw flour taste disappears.
- You can serve tongue warm or at room temperature.
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- soup pot
- frying pan
Braised beef tongue
- 1 beef tongue
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 1 stalk celery cleaned and chopped into three pieces
- 2 onions skinned and quartered
- 1 carrot scraped and cut into three pieces
- 1 leek cleaned and cut into strips
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 carrot scraped and sliced
- 1 celery washed and cut into strips.
- 1 onion peeled and cut into rings
- 4 tablespoons tomato paste
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 tomatoes washed and quartered
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 sprigs Fresh Parsley
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 cups broth from beef tongue
- 2 tablespoons butter
- ½ pound mushrooms cut into slices
- ½ cup Madeira wine
- 1 tablespoon Fresh Parsley finely chopped
Ingredients you need per step are listed below the step in Italic
Stewed beef tongue
- Soak the beef tongue overnight in water, adding one tablespoon of salt. This removes the impurities. Ensure there's about 1 inch (2.54 cm) of water above the meat.1 beef tongue, 2 tablespoons salt
- Rinse the tongue under running cold water.
- Fill a pan with cold water and one tablespoon of salt. Put the beef tongue in there (make sure there's about 1 inch (2.54 cm) of water above the meat) and bring to a boil. Simmer for 15 minutes.
- Remove the beef tongue from the water and discard the cooking water.
- Fill with fresh cold water, again make sure the beef is about 1 inch (2.54 cm) underwater and place the beef tongue in it. Add the celery, onions, carrot, and leek, and bring to a boil.1 stalk celery, 2 onions, 1 carrot, 1 leek
- Lower the heat and put the lid on the pan. Simmer for 3 to 4 hours until the tongue is cooked *(see tips).
- Remove stock from the pan (you will need it for the sauce) and remove the tongue.
- Rinse the tongue under cold running water and peel off the outer skin.
- Cut the tongue into ½ cm thick slices with a sharp knife.
- Melt the butter in the pan, add the carrot, celery, onion, and tomato paste to the pan, and fry for 2 minutes over medium heat.1 tablespoon butter, 1 carrot, 1 celery, 1 onion, 4 tablespoons tomato paste
- Sprinkle the flour over the veggies and cook for another 2 minutes.3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- Put the tomatoes, thyme, parsley, and bay leaves in the pan and pour in the stock. Bring to a boil and cook over low heat for 15 minutes.3 tomatoes, 2 bay leaves, 4 sprigs Fresh Parsley, 2 sprigs fresh thyme, 2 cups broth
- Melt some butter in the pan and fry the mushrooms for 10 minutes until golden brown.2 tablespoons butter, ½ pound mushrooms
- Pour in the Madeira, boil, and cook for 2 minutes. Then turn the heat down again.½ cup Madeira wine
- Pour the tomato vegetable sauce through the sieve and press all the flavors with the back of a spoon.
- Heat the sauce until it is hot, and season with salt and pepper.
- Place the slices of the beef tongue on a plate and add some Madeira sauce. Garnish with finely chopped parsley. Serve with the rest of the sauce.1 tablespoon Fresh Parsley
Let everything cool down as quickly as possible
- Refrigerator - Cover the meat and sauce and refrigerate for up to 2 days.
- Freezer - Store the meat and sauce in a freezer box. This keeps it good for up to 2 months. After that, let it thaw in the refrigerator.
- Reheat - Put everything in a pan and heat until hot.