The Offal Truth: Depression Hits The Cows
economic downturn massive depression is forcing some homemakers to look at alternatives to expensive meats.
Retail and food experts say that worry over the high cost of prime meat cuts and the economic downturn have more shoppers checking out supermarket offal offerings. But the return to eating innards was underway even before this year’s financial crisis, as celebrity chefs and restaurateurs have encouraged a return to cooking organs such as liver and kidneys, which once enjoyed a central place in British cooking. (See how farmers around the world prepare their crops for harvest.)
At ASDA, Britain’s second largest supermarket chain and a subsidiary of Wal-Mart, offal sales were up 20% last month compared to November 2007. Sainsbury’s, the country’s third largest supermarket chain, is selling 48% more pig livers, 22% more chicken livers and 8% more pig kidney than it was last year. Overall, sales of offal in the U.K. are expected to reach more than $62 million this year according to industry analysts Mintel.
“It’s price-driven,” says Bob Cotton, CEO of the British Hospitality Association, which represents 60,000 hotels and restaurants in the U.K. “I couldn’t say the British public have suddenly fallen in love with offal. That would be gilding the lily.”
I’m all for using the whole cow! Here are some great offal recipes:
Lamb Fries (aka Cowboy Caviar aka Balls) and Beef Tongue from Confabulist‘
Tripas à modo do Porto – The tripe stew for which Porto is famous (I have had this and it is quite tasty – like lentil soup with meat)
And something a bit more gourmet… Beef Liver with Carmelized Onions and Pecans