Cooking the Unthinkable: Chitlins
Cooking the Unthinkable is a series that examines some of the more eccentric ingredients. Whether you are a fan of the bizarre or are preparing for the eminent collapse of Western society this series will help you better stomach weird food.
Few ingredients trigger as many dry heaves as chitlins. Also known as chitterlings these stringy morsels of porcine protein have been treated with disdain by most of the so-called civilized world. But cleaned and prepared properly they can prove to be very tasty especially when paired with other soul food favorites like collard greens and cornbread. That being said, I don’t think I would fix them for any special occasion diners like Mother’s Day of Valentine’s. Just sayin’.
But just what are chitlins? Well according to Wikipedia, “Chitterlings (sometimes spelled chitlins or chittlins in vernacular) are the intestines of a pig that have been prepared as food. In various countries across the world, such food is prepared and eaten either as part of a daily diet, or at special events, holidays or religious festivities.”
I have never actually cooked chitlins. The smell during cooking is said to be oppressive. I have eaten them though and they were pretty tasty. However, they were not tasty enough for me to permeate every fabric in my home with the aroma of pig intestines. If you have an open cooking area (like a desert) or you are olfactorlly challenged you may want to give this recipe a try. It’s from Uncle Lou’s Chitlins, the premiere purveyor of chitterlings in America – the Cadillac of pig entrails.
- 2 – 5 Lbs Bag of Uncle Lou’s Super Clean Chitlins
- 1 Clove Garlic
- 1 Cup diced Celery
- 1 Cup diced Onions
- 2 Tablespoons Crushed Red Pepper
- Rinse and clean chitlins to desired cleanliness.
- In a stock pot completely cover with water and boil for approx 1 hour.
- Drain water and again cover with fresh water, add all additional ingredients and boil until tender (approx 1 ½ to 2 hours).