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Barbecued ox tongue w/ black leeks

I absolutely love ox tongue, whilst also celebrating its very reasonable price and benefit to the kitchen budget. Smoked by Swaledale Butchers, then cooked over charcoal and it is nothing short of eye-rollingly delicious! A wood-fired grill is pretty essential for this recipe.

Serves 4



  1. Place the ox tongue in a fitting saucepan and add the onion and herbs, peppercorns, and garlic.
  2. Cover well with water and then poach gently at a ‘wobble’ for about 2 maybe even 3 hours. When done a knife will slide in fairly easily but meeting with only a little resistance.
  3. Do not overcook to totally tender or it will fall apart on the grill.
  4. NOTE: on no account should you throw away the poaching liquid as it will be the base for the most tremendous soup.
  5. Allow the tongue to cool then nick the skin and peel while still warm as this makes the job far easier.
  6. While the tongue cooks, mix the ketchup; Worcester sauce, clove, pepper and vinegar together and set to one side. Optional: blitz in the flesh of the onion and garlic once poached.
  7. Mix together the mustard powder, paprika, and brown sugar.
  8. Towards the end of the tongue cooking light the barbeque, and when the coals are ready place the whole leeks onto the grill.
  9. Cook to nothing but jet black all over and turn when required.
  10. When done a knife should easily slide straight through them.
  11. Remove from grill, allow to cool and then only remove the really burnt skin.
  12. Halve and then slice down the centre.
  13. Dress heavily with a mix of olive oil, lemon juice, and a little dried chilli and serve at room temperature with the tongue.
  14. Dust the tongue all over with the rub.
  15. Place on the grill and when colouring turn over and paint the browning side.
  16. Sprinkle over more of the rub, then grill, followed by another paint. Do this until all used up by which time the tongue should be richly coloured and caramelised.
  17. Slice the sweet tongue and eat with the dressed leeks.

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