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Photo by youngchung

Who doesn’t crave a little bit of animal brain, from time to time? Here are five recipes that show you how to cook with cranium contents.
Fried Brains

1 calf’s brain per person

1 cup all purpose flour

2 cloves garlic minced

1/2 bunch italian parsley chopped

1 lemon

1/2 stick salted butter
salt and pepper

Pick the blood vessels and film off of the brains and soak in cold water overnight. Change the water every few hours. When they are properly soaked the water will remain clear.
 Blanch in boiling water for two minutes and remove onto a rack to thoroughly drain.

Season with and pepper. Roll through a pan of flour to coat evenly. Melt butter in a skillet on medium high heat. When it is frothy and begins to turn a nut brown color add brains. Sauté until golden brown, constantly basting with butter to evenly brown.

Remove and keep warm. In another skillet melt 3-4 Tablespoons of salted butter and quickly saute parsley and garlic. Remove from heat, squeeze lemon into garlic / parsley mixture, stir, and pour over brains.

Courtesy of msglaze.

Filipino Fish Head Soup

Photo by chanmelmel

1 fish head (salmon, lapu-lapu, maya-maya, tanguigue)
1 whole garlic, crushed and peeled

2 thumb-sized pieces of ginger, peeled and thinly sliced

2 onions, peeled, halved and sliced

6 c. of boiling water
2 tbsps. of cooking oil

a bunch of sili leaves

Heat the cooking oil in a large deep saucepan or casserole. Saute the garlic and ginger until fragrant. Add the onions and cook, stirring, for another 30 seconds. Pour in the boiling water. Lower the fish head into the hot water. Season with patis. Lower the heat, cover and simmer for about 10-15 minutes, depending on the size of the fish head.

Courtesy of Pinoycook.

Lamb/Goat Brain Curry

This chef is hilarious. “I forgot the oil. My brain is not functioning, thinking about this awesome brain curry today.”

Brain Soup (Hirnsuppe)

A traditional German recipe that is surprisingly simple, if you have some brains around the house.

1 calf’s brain
2 tbls butter
1 qt beef Stock
1 egg yolk
1 cup cream

To wash brain clear of blood, soak in cold water, renewing water several times. Skin and chop fine. Melt butter in pan, add brain, sprinkle with flour, and saute 10 minutes. Add beef stock and simmer 20 minutes. Just before serving, stir in egg yolk and cream.

Courtesy of recipehound.

Salted Fish Head Curry Recipe (Kari Kepala Ikan Masin)

Photo by matahati67

1 tbs oil
2 onions, chopped
4 shallots, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
¼ tsp mustard seed
¼ tsp fennel seeds
¼ tsp fenugreek
¼ tsp black pepper
3 tbs fish curry powder
200ml fish stock
1.5kg salted fish head
1 litre low fat milk
300g orange and apricot yoghurt
3 eggplants, quartered
3 tbs tamarind paste

Heat oil in awok over medium fire. Stir fry garlic, onion and shallots until fragrant, about three minutes. Add mustard seeds, fennel seeds, fenugreek and black pepper. Mix well for 1 minute. Add fish curry powder and fry for another one minute. Pour in fish stock, stirring all the while. Add salted fish head, milk and yoghurt. Allow to simmer over slow fire fore 5 minutes. Add eggplant and cook another 5 minutes. Allow the gravy to reduce before adding tamarind paste. Mix well and bring to a boil. Serve hot, garnished with chillies and coriander leaves.

Courtesy of Pickles and Spices.



About The Author

Tom Gates

Tom is a wayward writer based in Los Angeles. He has served as Editor for both Matador Nights and Life. He loves to go far, far away whenever possible. He is also pretending to be a third person right now and is obviously writing his own bio. He knows that you knew that, despite the deft maneuvering of pronouns. Tom's new book 'Wayward: Fetching Tales from a Year On The Road' is available for download on Amazon and iTunes.

  • Julie

    While interesting, I won’t renege on my personal vow to never eat organ meats.

  • joshywashington

    That’s ok, i will munch enough brains for the two of us!

  • Tim Patterson

    I prefer liver.

  • Hal

    Bring it on! I’ll try anything once…and a couple of these look tasty enough for 2 rounds.

  • Shreya

    bheja fry! :O

    My folks are vegetarian. They’re okay with my present carnivorous state, but I’m seriously considering turning vegetarian again (not for religion/cultural reasons)

  • Turner

    Brains so are fattening it’s ridiculous.

  • Michelle

    This makes me want to watch No Reservations…

  • Lola

    My kind of article – coming from a goat and bushmeat eater!

  • Carlo

    brains…BRAINS! (spoken in zombie voice)

    I remember being told that fish don’t have brains…just nerve endings (or something like that)…but they do. In fact, they also feel pain. Check it out:

  • Tim Patterson

    I can’t believe Julie doesn’t eat organ meat. Missing out, big time.

  • Adam

    I really enjoyed the fish head curry recipe!

  • Phil

    While I have nothing against brains, with all that cholesterol involved, point me to the burgers instead. Death would taste so much better

  • America Alcala

    I know this is an old article about brains,but I would like to express my fondness towards them. My mother is Mexican and this was one of my favorite dishes that she used to make. Unfortunately, they don’t sell brains in my Supermarket anymore…the only thing I have is the memory of their delicious taste and creamy texture…:-( and I hope that some day I will be able to  enjoy them again. 

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