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Braised Stuffed Hearts: 1942

Braised Stuffed Hearts: 1942

October 1942: "Share The Meat recipes. To supplement the voluntary weekly meat allotment of two and a half pounds per person, housewives are turning to the unlimited supply of 'variety' meats on the market. Beef or calf hearts are among these meats which are rich in iron and vitamin B. Wash and slit the hearts, remove gristle and blood vessels. For the stuffing, chop an onion and a stalk of celery into two tablespoons of fat and cook for a few minutes. Add two to three cups of soft bread crumbs and season to taste with salt and pepper. Thyme goes well with heart - add a pinch to the stuffing. Fill hearts with stuffing and sew up the slit with coarse thread. Brown the hearts on all sides in fat, then place in a covered baking dish or casserole. Add a half of cup of water, cover closely and cook until tender in a very moderate oven (about 300 degrees Fahrenheit). Calf hearts require about one and a half hours, beef hearts will require much longer - four to five hours. Make gravy of the pan drippings and serve the hearts piping hot, garnished with crisp greens." Photograph by Ann Rosener for the Office of Emergency Management.

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Mmmm .. not many would know ..

But .. anyone who has ever eaten minced meat or even cheap hamburgers, has likely eaten heart .. as well as other offal. Offal does have a much different flavor to other "prime" cuts .. there's no comparison really. You can make any meat edible and taste O.K. as long as you know what flavors it best. Most birds, including chicken, are relatively flavorless until they are seasoned with herbs, spices and other additions that increase the flavor to a more tasty level. Try roasting your next chicken with a peeled lemon inside it, and with garlic, sweet basil and ginger sprinkled over it, and you'll notice the difference.

Hearts are lovely

I'm 33 yrs old and affluent, (so I'm not from the 1940's and poor)

I eat heart regularly, as well as liver and kidneys. I also make my own black pudding (blood sausage). I think it is a crime for an animal to be slaughtered and only the prime cuts eaten. In the UK there is a 'Head to Tail' attitude to cooking amongst foodies. If you don't want to eat offal thats ok, but don't say it's gross if you are unwilling to try it.

Quite simply from some of the comments above I'm suprised that they got past the 'Captcha' spam math question.

Just my 2 pence (cents)

Tastes great

Heart is not at all mushy, it is quite the opposite, a bit chewy and full of flavor. Its just another muscle, not much different than the other parts of a cow we eat.

Hearts of Oak

Some time in the 1940s my grandma served the family with braised hearts for Sunday dinner. My grandfather rather rashly started to hum "Hearts of Oak" (a British Navy marching tune) and had the whole lot thrown at him before she stalked out.

Have a Heart

Actually beef heart, while being pretty darn high in cholesterol, tastes like roast beef. My German and Irish grandparents, raised during the Depression, made this.

Just another example of

Just another example of women taking care of the family. I can't imagine having to do that.


When I was a little kid and my mom would make me eat something sketchy and all she'd say is "It's good for you, eat it," I knew it was an organ meat.

Organ meat is mushy and gross, totally different from a sirloin.

More yuckage

At least it has the excuse of being a wartime recipe. This is from 1969.

[Yum! - Dave]

Paging Janis Joplin

Have another lil' piece of my heart now bay-bee...

For those of us who are vegetarians...

it's all pretty nasty. But it's still interesting to see what (other) people will eat.

What, no recipes for tongue?

I don't see the big deal. Heart is a muscle, just like *gasp* sirloin.
If the idea of eating muscles bothers you, you could become a vegetarian.

But seriously, thanks for the recipe. I'll have to try it.

Who wants the ventricles?

Mmmm, are we having variety meat again for dinner? Don't forget to add the thyme. It wouldn't be the same without it.

It's so sad to think that somewhere in Africa there are children without organs to eat.

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