"I thought we were playing, Roman. I'm not really making chicken hearts tonight."
Tears. No bullshit. He was so upset that he cried.
What could I do? As a mother I want my children to try new things, especially foods, and here was my 4 1/2 year old son begging me for chicken hearts. I couldn't quash his adventurous spirit.
So, I bought a package.
And the adventure began.
I've never cooked chicken hearts before (shocking, I know), so I had no idea how to proceed. Thank goodness for Google. I browsed different cooking sights for suggestions, filing good tips away while disregarding those that would not apply today (namely, those that involved grilling. Not possible on a wet, May day at the beach). All the while I tried not to allow visions of giant chicken hearts beating ever closer, growing to enormous sizes, and waiting to devour us all, to invade my subconscious. Honestly, I feared Bill Cosby had ruined the tiny organs for me indefinitely. Had I endangered my children? Was I adequately armed in case of attack? Thankfully, I remained calm enough to decide on a game plan for cooking the tiny, seemingly harmless, ex-blood-pumpers.
Since I had time, I decided to marinate the hearts in olive oil and chopped garlic.
This was a new food for the kiddos, and new foods are met with suspicion and fear, so I had to have a few back-up side dishes that I knew the kids would eat so they wouldn't starve.
The plan: sauteed chicken hearts with diced potatoes in bacon and couscous. And of course, wine for me!
I started with cooking the bacon and potato together since they would take the longest. Since I only had two slices of bacon, I also added a little butter to help the potatoes cook. And because you can never have enough fat. I seasoned with pepper and a little bit of salt.
The different colored potatoes looked and smelled delicious!
Then, I prepared the couscous as directed. It would only take 8 minutes total. After the potatoes and bacon were cooked, I used the leftover butter and grease to cook the hearts in.
Mmmm...I love mixing dinner with science.
The only extra seasoning I used was fresh ground salt and pepper. They might look a little intimidating, but it actually smelled pretty good!
The big moment: tasting. Evie was pretty unprepared since she wasn't at the store with us, so she met the plate with a mixture of disgust and disbelief.
Roman was very excited to try, but Evie was less convinced. Still, she gave it a good bite, and declared, "YUCK!" Roman on the other hand...
I was very proud of my little minions for trying something new and weird. Honestly, they mostly tasted like dark meat chicken.
Next time on adventures in cooking with the Metzgers: gizzards?