The term sweetbread is a misnomer. Bread that is sweet is called Sweet Bread. But this sweetbread is neither sweet nor bread. You will spare yourself an unwelcome surprise if you familiarise yourself with this in advance.
Sweetbreads are the internal organs of a young animal. They come in two types: heart and neck part. The younger the animals, the better the flavour of the sweetbread. Up until the mid-1940s in America, there were no supermarkets. As money was scarce, people would butcher their own cattle and consume, without wasting any part. They recognized the interesting taste of this part of the meat. Nowadays, it is considered a delicacy by people.
How do Sweetbreads taste?
Since they are soaked and blanched first, the texture is exceptionally smooth, tender and moist. The flavour is mild and creamy. There’s a prevalent rumour that the name Sweetbread stems from the fact that some find it more sweet than savoury.
However, sweetbreads have earned their reputation as signature dishes at restaurants, as one can hardly find the ingredients locally.
How are the sweetbreads cooked?
The crucial step in preparing sweetbreads is soaking them in acidulated cold water, milk or buttermilk. Sometimes, the sweetbreads are blanched before being grilled or pain-friend.
Way to cook sweet bread
Always soak them in cold water for 3 to 24 hours to get rid of any blood.
Some like sweetbreads served in tiny pieces and some in larger chunks. The method is similar to the preparation of chicken hearts but better.
Lamb sweetbreads are first simmered in a white sauce. You can increase the heat by topping the dish with sliced jalapeno.
Sweetbreads are nutritious
Organ meats are nutrient-dense. While portion control is essential, sweetbreads do contain ample nutrition. Indigenous cultures have been serving organ meats to women of childbearing age through generations.
These are rich in minerals, omega three fatty acids, and vitamins like A, E and K. Sweetbreads are also a rich source of vitamin C, Vitamin B-6 and Potassium.
Despite that, eat them in moderation as they are incredibly high in fat and contain purines, which contributes to gout.
Where to buy
Try online meat stores or your local butcher. Take a trip early morning as there are high chances of this meat selling out. Make sure the sweetbreads are white, fleshy and firm to touch.
Many fine-dining restaurants have this delicacy on their menu if you don’t want to take the trouble to source and cook. You can always go and try this must-have dish.
The possibilities are endless when cooking the super versatile and delicious sweetbreads. They are tasty when prepared properly, and you can make them at home too. Sweetbreads are delicious. It is worth a taste to find out if you like them or not.