Brains - Defined, Dishes and Recipes

Brains of animals are esteemed by the cook in producing delicate entrées, and are remunerative to the proprietor on account of their small cost. They must, before cooking, be thoroughly cleansed of the skin and blood that covers them; they are easily digested, and fairly nutritious.

The brains of all domestic animals are eaten and considered a luxury. The brains of ost­riches and peacocks were among the rare and costly delicacies at the famous banquets of the ancients:

Nearly all kinds obtained in our markets are by a harmless fiction classed as calves' brains, they being regarded the best, as they certainly are for a neat and compact appearance after cooking in slices; but any others do as well for the various chopped-up forms.

Tubs and barrels full of brains are sent out by the pork packers; there are shops in some parts of the city where the retailing of brains is a specialty; they are put up in ten cents' portions in wooden butter dishes and sold by hundreds daily.

Ox brains are equally plentiful certain seasons and are easily obtainable at all times from the dealers in fancy meats who advertise to supply hotels and restaurants.

SCRAMBLED BRAINS—Pigs, sheep, calf or beef brains, as there is scarcely any difference in the flavor, being all composed of the same material, are cleansed, par-boiled in salted water with a dash of vinegar, taken up, drained, cut into small pieces, added to an equal volume of beaten eggs, seasoned with salt, pepper and nutmeg, poured into a pan containing butter, and scrambled around till set. Served on toast (optional), garnished with croutons and parsley.

BRAIN FORCEMEAT — Cold boiled brains minced, then pounded to a paste with flour, egg yolks; seasoned with nutmeg, salt, pepper and chopped parsley.

BRAIN CROQUETTES WITH PEAS—The croquettes formed in cone shapes of "brain forcemeat" breaded, fried, served with a frill stuck into the croquette, and garnished with green peas at the ends of the dish, with Allemande sauce at side

BRAIN CUTLETS, VILLEROI SAUCE—The cutlets size and shape of small lamb chops made of "brain forcemeat" with a piece of macaroni to represent the bone, breaded, fried; served with Villeroi sauce poured around.

BRAIN CAKES WITH BACON—The cakes size and shape of small codfish cakes, made of "brain forcemeat" breaded, fried, served with a slice of broiled bacon and Béchamel sauce poured around.

ROAST BRAINS WITH FORCEMEAT BALLS — Calf's brains par-boiled and trimmed, seasoned with salt and pepper, dipped in melted butter, then rolled in flour, quickly roasted and basted with butter; served garnished with fried balls of "brain forcemeat" and fines herbes sauce poured around.

SCALLOPED BRAINS IN SHELL — Cold cooked brains in slices, mixed with a white Italian sauce, filled into scallop shells, sprinkled with grated cheese and bread crumbs, baked, served in the shells (called, CERVEAUX EN COQUILLE AU GRATIN).

BRAINS AND MUSHROOMS IN CASES—Cold cooked brains and button mushrooms cut in neat pieces, tossed in butter over a quick fire to color lightly, then moistened with Supreme sauce; served in fancy paper cases.

CALF'S BRAINS AND TONGUE, MUSHROOM SAUCE—The brains par-boiled and trimmed, the tongues boiled, skinned, trimmed and cut lengthwise, dipped in cooling Piquante sauce; when cold, both breaded and fried; served with mushroom sauce.

FRIED BRAINS WITH BROWN BUTTER—The brains blanched and trimmed, seasoned, brushed with butter, rolled in flour, dipped in beaten eggs, then fried; served with brown butter poured over them, made by melting butter over a quick fire till it froths and browns, then adding to it the juice of a lemon and some finely chopped parsley (called, CERVEAUX AU BEURRE NOIR).

FRIED BRAINS BREADED, TARTAR SAUCE—The brains blanched, trimmed, and masked with Tartar sauce, then breaded and fried; served with Tartar sauce at the ends of the dish, and Parisienne potatoes down the aides.

CALF'S BRAINS, SAUCE VINAIGRETTE—The brains blanched, trimmed, and boiled till done in white stock, served with Vinaigrette sauce, and garnished with parsley.

BRAISED BRAINS WITH STUFFED TOMATOES—The brains blanched, trimmed, and arranged in a sautoir with carrot, onion, parsley, bay leaves and cloves, moistened with white stock, covered with a sheet of buttered paper, braised till done, taken up, the liquor skimmed and strained into a Vélouté sauce, re duced, the brains served with some of the sauce poured over them, and garnished with small stuffed tomatoes.

BRAISED BRAINS, SAUCE REMOULADE — The brains prepared and cooked the same way as in the preceding recipe, with the addition of a little white wine to the moistening stock; when done, the braise skimmed, strained and reduced to a glaze, then mixed into a hot Remoulade sauce; served with the sauce poured over the brains, and garnished with fancy croutons.

BRAISED BRAINS WITH MUSHROOMS—The brains blanched, trimmed, and arranged in a sautoir with slices of bacon, vegetables and spices, moistened with white stock and juice of a lemon, covered with thin slices of bacon, braised till done, taken up, the bacon cut in pieces, the braise reduced to a glaze, and strained over some button mushrooms and small glazed onions, the brains sprinkled with fried bread crumbs, and garnished with the bacon, mushrooms and onions alternately.

BRAINS IN SAUCE POULETTE WITH RICE —The brains blanched, trimmed and simmered in poulette sauce, served with the sauce poured over them and garnished with small timbales of rice, with a small sprig of parsley stuck in them.

BRAINS WITH SORREL, SAUCE RAVIGOTE —The brains blanched, trimmed and simmered till tender in white stock with the juice of a lemon. Served on a bed of purée of sorrel, the brains masked with Ravigote sauce.

CREAMED BRAINS WITH KIDNEY BEANS —The brains blanched, trimmed and simmered in cream sauce till done; served masked with the sauce and garnished with kidney beans (flageolets) that have been sautéed in butter.

CROUSTADES OF BRAINS WITH ARTICHOKES—The brains prepared and cooked the same way as given for " braised brains with stuffed tomatoes "; when done, the brains cut in slices, mixed with the vélouté sauce, filled into paste croustades; served garnished with artichoke bottoms spread with " brain forcemeat " and filled with small pieces of glazed calf's tongue.

BROCHETTE OF CALF'S BRAINS—See brochette dishes.

BRAINS WITH RICE, TURKISH STYLE—Cold cooked brains worked into a creamy paste with cream, seasoned with salt, pepper, lemon juice and nutmeg; the rice boiled in white stock with salt, butter, pepper and cinnamon; served, the rice in small molds, turned out onto the dish, and masked over with brains, sprinkled with finely chopped parsley or chervil.

BRAIN PATTIES OR VOL-AU-VENTS—Cold cooked brains cut in small dice with mushrooms, made hot in Supreme sauce, filled into patty shells, cover placed on and served.

SAVORY OMELET OF CALF'S BRAINS—The brains prepared as in the preceding, the omelet mixture made of beaten eggs, finely cut chives, parsley, salt, pepper and nutmeg, the omelet formed, enclosing some of the mixture; served with more of the brains in sauce poured around.

CALF'S BRAINS, PARSLEY SAUCE—The brains blanched, trimmed, and boiled till done in white stock; served on a slice of toast, parsley sauce poured over the brains and garnished with Hollandaise potatoes.

BRAIN KROMESKIES, MADERIA SAUCE—Slices of cold cooked brains dipped in glaze, encircled with a very thin strip of cold boiled bacon, pinned with a toothpick, dipped in batter and fried, the toothpick removed; served with madeira sauce poured around.

BROILED BRAINS WITH PARSLEY BUTTER—The brains blanched, trimmed and cut in slices, seasoned, broiled; served on toast with Maitre D'Hôtel butter poured over them and garnished with Julienne potatoes.

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