Your basic tripe stew

Tripe stew in the Polish tradition - red from the paprika!

Tripe stew in the Polish tradition - red from the paprika!

We love tripe.  My Mom is from Germany, and her family ate everything edible on an animal, and passed that principle down to me. 

I often have tripe at dimsum, and it’s a real treat.  It’s usually served two ways.  Honeycomb tripe (from the second stomach structure of a cow) is stewed with turnips in sauce, rendering it soft and savory.  Book tripe, from the third stomach structure (I say this because cows technically don’t have four stomachs), is steamed with scallions and ginger and served with a light dipping sauce.  Try one or both when you go for dimsum just to see if you can deal with the texture, which is the issue for most Americans.

I make it at home once every few years.  It’s readily available at Asian markets, like 99 Ranch, and pretty easy to deal with, since most of the tripe sold nowadays has been thoroughly cleaned and blanched.

For the recipe that follows, use honeycomb tripe, which has little honeycomb indentations on one side.  Don’t use book tripe, which is the other one commonly sold.  Book (aka leaf) tripe has thin strips on one side, and does not work as well in a stew.

This is more or less a Polish recipe, but I’ve futzed with it over the years. 

Serve with a soft starch, if you like, but I want textural contrast, so I eat it with a crispy baguette.

Renate’s Tripe Stew
     serves 6, if you have sides and/or plenty of bread

2 1/2 pounds honeycomb tripe
3 tablespoons Canola oil
1 rib celery, de-stringed/small dice
1 large carrot, small dice
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/3 cup tomato paste
2 – 3 cups chicken stock
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
1 teaspoon ground marjoram
Salt & pepper

1).  Rinse tripe and scrub well with Kosher salt on both sides.  Rinse several times.  Cut into 1/2 inch strips that are 3 – 4 inches long.  Boil strips  for 40 mins.  Drain well and set aside.
2).  Saute celery, carrot, onion and garlic in oil in heavy gauge pot until soft and golden brown.  Do not allow to brown too much or to burn!
3).  Add tomato paste and fry in vegetables for about a minute.
4).  Add tripe and saute for about 5 minutes.
5).  Add paprika and marjoram and a little salt and pepper; salt is dependent upon saltiness of stock used.
6).  Add stock until ingredients are covered, but not swimming.
7).  Combine well, cover and allow to simmer for 1 1/4 hours.
8).  Remove cover and allow to simmer an additional 15 minutes.  If too dry, add a little more stock.
9).  Check for tenderness.  If not soft enough for you, cover and cook another 10 – 15 minutes.
10).  Adjust seasoning and enjoy!

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