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Beef tongue refers to the tongue of a cow that is used as a culinary ingredient. It is a muscle meat known for its rich flavor and tender texture. In many cultures, including South Africa, beef tongue is considered a delicacy and is prepared in various dishes. It is often braised, boiled, or roasted and can be served sliced or shredded. Beef tongue is known for its unique taste and is enjoyed by many meat lovers around the world.Cooking beef tongue in South Africa typically involves a combination of braising and simmering to achieve a tender and flavorful result. Here’s a basic recipe for cooking beef tongue in the South African style.

How to cook beef tongue South Africa

Beef tongue is often served with a variety of sauces or condiments in South Africa, such as chakalaka (a spicy vegetable relish) or monkey gland sauce (a tangy barbecue-style sauce). You can also enjoy it with a selection of pickles or chutneys.
Remember to adjust the cooking time based on the size and tenderness of the beef tongue you are using. Enjoy your South African-style beef tongue!
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Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 20 minutes
Course brunch
Cuisine South African


  • 1 beef tongue (around 2-3 pounds)

    - 1 onion, chopped

    - 2 carrots, peeled and chopped

    - 2 celery stalks, chopped

    - 4 cloves of garlic, minced

    - 2 bay leaves

    - 1 tablespoon peppercorns

    - 1 tablespoon salt

    - 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

    - Water


  • Start by thoroughly cleaning the beef tongue. Rinse it under cold water and remove any excess fat or debris. You can also peel off the outer skin if desired.
    2. In a large pot, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic. Sauté the vegetables until they become slightly softened and fragrant.
    3. Add the beef tongue to the pot and pour enough water to cover the tongue completely. Add the bay leaves, peppercorns, and salt to the pot.
    4. Bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and cover the pot with a lid. Allow the tongue to simmer gently for about 2 to 3 hours or until it becomes tender. Check occasionally and add more water if needed to ensure the tongue remains submerged.
    5. After the tongue is tender, remove it from the pot and let it cool slightly. At this point, you can choose to peel off the skin if you haven't done so already. It should come off easily.
    6. Once the tongue has cooled enough to handle, slice it into thin slices.
    7. Serve the beef tongue slices with your preferred accompaniments, such as mashed potatoes, vegetables, or rice. You can also serve it in sandwiches or use it in other recipes as desired.



South African cuisine often includes flavorful sauces or marinades. You can marinate the beef tongue with spices and herbs before cooking, or serve it with a sauce of your choice, such as a tangy tomato-based sauce or a creamy mushroom sauce.
Enjoy your South African-style beef tongue!


Serving: 50g
Keyword Beef tongue
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