Well, this is the end of the line. Absolutely, totally rock bottom.  I asked for the Worst Mid-Century Recipes you guys could throw at me, and I got what I wanted.  Four hilarious and horrible offerings from the world of Mid-Century Cooking. And I think it is pretty fitting that we end this contest with the creepiest recipe of the bunch.

Jellied Tongues.  That’s right.  You read that correctly.  Jellied. Tongues.

Thanks to Kelly, aka EarthaKitsch, for submitting this odd and horrifiying recipe.  And by the way, I hate you now, Kelly. Seriously.

Ha ha ha ha ha ha. No, seriously.

I must admit that I was trying to find any way, any small reason at all why I couldn’t make this thing.  I put off calling around to look for tongue until the last possible minute. I got Kelly’s recipe submission on June 30th. I didn’t call the butcher shop until this Monday. 

“Hello, this is the meat counter.”

“Yeah, umm…hi.”

“Hi. Can I help you?”

“Yeah….I’m…ahhhh…looking for tongue.”


“Yeah, beef tongue.  Crazy, huh? Well, I am sure you don’t have any, sothanksandI’mjustgonnahangup..”

“Beef tongue?  Oh, yeah. We’ve got it in the freezer. How much to you need?”

“Son of a…”

“What was that?”

“I said, beef. Beef tongue. A whole one. I will pick it up this afternoon.”

So, thanks butchers of Midland for having freaking beef tongue on hand. Thanks a lot.  No weaseling out that way.  And thanks for giving me the unique experience of seeing a beef tongue in a plastic bag, laying on the floor of my car.

When I brought the horrible thing home, I refused to touch it.  So, Tom had to step up and do the prep for the tongue.  Here is the awfulness in photos.  Those of you who are pregnant (I am looking at you, Andrea) might want to avert your eyes now.  I mean it.

Yep, there it is.  One cow tongue.  And brave Tom holding it.

Cramming it in a pot.


Okay, everyone take a deep breath because the next one is a screamer.  Ready…inhale…


Ahhhhhhhhhhhh!  Ahhhh! Ahhh! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!

Ahhhhh….God. Look at it, just look. I hope you are happy, Kelly.

Damnit, it’s a tongue!!!!

Then Tom peeled it.  Yes, peeled it.  I didn’t take pictures of that part, because I got so nauseated I had to leave the room.  And don’t mock me for having a weak stomach.  I never claimed I was Farmgirl!

Luckily, after Tom peeled it (gag) and sliced it, it looked more like meat.

And there you have it.  Slices of beef tongue.  With only small amounts of screaming on the side. 

So, after a pep-talk phone call from my mom (“It’s just beef. I ate it as a kid. You eat hot dogs, don’t you?  Just don’t think about it and eat it.”) I was ready to actually touch it. Oh, and make the recipe.  That, too.

Oh, and a side note, Kelly.  This recipe didn’t call for olives at all!!! What the heck are they doing in the photo??  Weirdness.

Well, at least this part is fine.  Especially cause there are no hooves in this gelatin.

Beef stock, onions, vinegar, salt and pepper.  I wasn’t supposed to add the salt and pepper till later, but looking at the tongue slices was still kind of freaking me out and I forgot what I was doing for a second.

Oh, another disturbing photo.  This is the “tongue stock”, better known as “the water we boiled the tongue in”. And THAT my friends, went into the gelatin.

This is all getting a little too “Little House on the Prairie” for me.

Eggs in the pan.  Because what would a MCMenu be without hard-boiled eggs, I ask you?

Soooooo, I touched it.  I had to eventually.  I mean, I can’t be a namby-pamby forever.  And you guys were counting on me to get my butt in gear and get that stupid gelatin made. I can’t disappoint you!

More tongue and eggs, and then the gelatin.

By the way, my whole kitchen smelled like cooking tongue.  It was almost enough to bring the gags back.

Whew.  Done. 

Sweet Jesus.

“Are you ready, Babe?”

“Yeah,” he stretched his neck and shook out his shoulders, like he was getting ready to lift something. “I can do this.”


“It’s fine.  Tastes like beef.  But the combination of meat and gelatin still just isn’t right.”

I still balked. “I don’t want to do this.  Don’t make me.”

“Come on, you have to.”

“No!! No, I don’t want to!”

“Just a little bite.  Here, just this little one.”

I took it gingerly from the fork.  Chewed, and ran for the sink.

Tom was laughing. “What do you think?”


It took a whole glass of milk to get the taste out of my mouth.  And yes, I realize the irony of washing down cow tongue with cow’s milk.   But at that point I didn’t care, I just wanted it down.  It was just so…chewy.  I couldn’t do it, especially with the picture of the cooked tongue in my mind.

The Verdict:  Tom claimed it was good.  That the tongue just tasted like beef and it was fine with him.  I just couldn’t get it down enough to even taste it, really.  It was chewy.  And that is all I am going to say.

He ate two whole servings. Two!!!!  I am agog.

So, that is the last finalist for the Mid-Century Menu!!! Whew!!!! Thank god that is over.  Come back next week to see some of the runners-up, and to start the voting on which recipe was the Worst. 

I think I am going to go lie down for awhile.