Offal for the win!!
There are some meals that just say "comfort" to me, and a delicious roast served with some mashed potatoes is definitely one of those meals! Roast is obviously Paleo, and definitely enjoyed in this house on a regular basis, but you can pack an even bigger super-food punch if you occasionally trade out that roast for a beef heart!
We've all read how offal (organ meat) should be a regular part of our diets (for more info read this post by The Paleo Mom). You need only read a few articles to know they're loaded with nutrients--more densely than regular muscle meat. Unfortunately, not everyone is crazy about offal. The first thing that comes to mind is liver. Liver is the most nutrient dense offal; however there are others that will still provide you much of the benefits of liver without the unique taste and texture.
Beef heart is a great place to start with offal. Because it is also a muscle, beef heart has a mild roast-like flavor and texture. And, like other organ meats, it is more inexpensive than a traditional roast. Per pound, grass fed beef heart is cheaper than grain fed roast beef! Score one for Paleo on a budget!
This is an easy crock pot/slow cooker recipe for cooking beef heart. If you don't have a slow-cooker, I recommend checking out Kathryn at Primal Bliss Nutrition's recipe for oven-roasted beef heart. This was the recipe I followed the first time I made beef heart because I had no slow-cooker, and it was delicious!
This is a recipe you can throw into the slow-cooker in the morning, and when you get home your house will smell delicious and dinner will be ready!
Crock Pot Beef Heart
1 grass fed beef heart (you may need to ask the butcher for one, as they are often kept in the back freezer)
3 onions peeled & cut in half
6 carrots cut in half (you can peel if you want, however I don't bother)
6-8 whole garlic cloves
1 cup of red wine (bone broth or water will work as well if you are doing a Whole 30 or wish to not use wine)
Salt & Pepper
*Note: I kept the seasonings simple as we were having gravy. When we aren't having gravy, I also add a couple of teaspoons of fresh chopped rosemary, thyme & parsley.
Place cut onions, carrots and whole garlic cloves in the bottom of the slow-cooker. Place beef heart on top of veggies. Some recipes tell you to trim the heart; however, I skip this. I find it's more work than it's worth, and I like keeping that fat on the heart for flavor. You can always cut around any difficult to chew portions after it's cooked. Pour wine or liquid of choice over the meat. Season with salt & pepper (and any other herbs you may be using). Place lid on slow-cooker, and cook on low for 8 hours. Remove heart from slow cooker and allow to set for 5-10 minutes. Slice into 1 inch pieces.
Basic Cauli Mash
*Note: There are a million recipes online for this, this is the way I have always made it.
1-2 heads of cauliflower chopped
3 Tbs ghee (I prefer Omghee's brand available online)
1/8-1/4 cup of coconut/almond milk(or grass fed milk/cream if you eat dairy
Salt & pepper to taste
Steam your cauliflower. I have always placed it in a microwave safe covered dish to steam it; however, if you don't wish to use a microwave you can cook it in a covered pot on the stove top. It is important that however you cook your cauliflower, DO NOT ADD WATER! Cauliflower has a lot of water on it's own so more water is not necessary, and is often the culprit for runny cauli mash. After you've cooked the cauliflower, strain off any excess water & put it in the food processor. Add ghee, salt & pepper. Turn the processor on low or high (low will take a little longer). Slowly add milk until you get the consistency you want.
Paleo Gravy (serving for 2)
*Note: Gravy adds carbs, so if you are watching those, you can always skip the gravy. Meat will be moist on it's own, but you can always do like me and slather everything with OMGhee!
1/2 cup almond milk or grass fed milk/cream if you eat dairy (you can use coconut milk, however the flavor palette is not as neutral)
1/2 cup of juices from cooked beef heart
1 tsp tapioca starch or arrowroot powder
Salt & pepper to taste
In a saucepan, mix tapioca starch with cold milk (do not mix starch with hot liquid as it will clump). Turn heat to med-low. Add beef heart juice and salt & pepper. Stir gravy constantly while heating as to avoid clumping. Cook until gravy reaches desired thickness and remove from heat. Keep in mind, gravy will thicken a bit as it cools.
Plate & enjoy!
Plate & enjoy!