BaltimOregon to Maine

Locavore Cooking with Southern Efficiency and Northern Charm

Loving that Lengua

with 2 comments

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Let’s just say simple, unadored lengua (braised beef tongue tacos) topped with cilantro, onion and lime on fresh corn tortillas are my new favorite Mexican dish. We finally made it to Corvallis’s best authentic (and cheap) Mexican restaurant: La Roca, run by the extended Nunez family from Oaxaca that runs other La Rocas and La Rockitas in nearby Philomath and on the coast in Newport and Lincoln City. Apparently the Nunez family are renown boxers in this area too.

If you’ve been scared to try tongue tacos, dig in. It’s really one of our most luscious cuts of meat but I guess the tastebuds (see below) are disconcerting to people. I guess we prefer concealed organ meats. But why is tongue so fatty if it’s a muscle? I guess that’s why it tastes so good.

I love that tongue is a delicacy in both Mexican and Jewish food cultures, or rather a celebrated peasant food that gained prominence out of the need to not waste any part of the beef. Funny that tongue is kosher though, no? I remember being grossed out the few times Nonny and Poppy had a whole tongue boiling in a pot at their house. Where did they get tongue in Richmond? They had nice whole tongue for sale in the esteemed butcher section of Richey’s Market today, probably to cater to their Mexican clientel. The 1950s-style grocery, featuring some good local produce and great deals, is our favorite place to shop outside of the far pricier food co-op and farmer’s market. Richey’s brings you back down to earth.

But Tacos Uurapan, while delicious, can no longer lay claim to the best Mexican comida in town. La Roca is where it’s at. Can’t wait to return for their weekday specials: Mole Oaxaqueno on Wednesdays and Enchiladas Verde on Thursday nights. Just as long as I can have them with lengua.

Beef Tongues/Flickr Creative Commons/By Nick Bair

Beef Tongues/Flickr Creative Commons/By Nick Bair

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Written by baltimoregon

March 29, 2009 at 2:05 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , , ,

2 Responses

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  1. Laura – I love tongue! My children find this a very peculiar taste; they always make rude comments when I order it in the deli. I did not know that tongue was used in Mexican cuisine. Would be interesting to taste it. I should never read your blog when I am hungry, as I am now! Pictures and descriptions are just too mouth-watering! Judy

    Judy

    March 30, 2009 at 8:53 am

  2. good pt that it’s surprisng that it’s kosher

    rd

    March 30, 2009 at 9:58 pm


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