Kidney: Delicious, Extremely Nutritious & Neglected No More!
January 15, 2022
One of my big goals in 2022 is to eat more organ meats.
I know it probably sounds crazy to many of you ("gross, why?") and for others, it sounds crazy since we live on a farm and are surrounded by this good stuff so "just walk outside, get some organs from the freezer and cook it Steph. Easy. What's the problem?"
Well, probably similar to people not making their own broth (so easy! go HERE), I do not know how to cook organs so it's daunting, especially because I don't want to screw it up and then hate that organ forever simply because I did a bad job of preparing it.
Kidney is what I most wanted to try since I learned it's almost as amazing as liver when it comes to nutrition making it the #2 superfood and one that is NEVER talked about, certainly nothing close to liver, making it more affordable ($4/lb!!! stock up now before everyone finds out!) and more available (it's hard for us to keep liver stocked)....it's like the neglected superfood.
Kidney has many benefits to it but the top 6 could be:
- Vitamin B12 at 1146% RDV you get enough B12 for a week! B12 creates energy and even better moods and sleep for some people.
- Selenium (202%): helps your metabolism via a healthy thyroid which also makes "youth-associated" hormones, supports the immune system, repairs damaged DNA.
- Riboflavin/B2 (168%): helps the growth, development and function of the cells and creates energy. According to the NIH, a riboflavin deficiency can result in cracked lips, hair loss and sores at the corners of your mouth.
- Iron (58%): note that this is the easily digestible "heme iron" which is then used to create hemoglobin in red blood cells which transfers oxygen from the lungs to the body, along with other functions like metabolism, growth and hormone production.
- Vitamin B6 (52%): involved in many enzyme reactions, metabolism, immune functions and cognitive health.
- Vitamin A (47%): important for vision, immune function and maintenance of organ health.
Kidney has many other benefits like being a good source of copper and folate.
Kidney also contains L-ergothioneine which is a rare amino acid that may promote the kidney health of people that eat it - following the Like Supports Like theory put forth by people like Dr. Royal Lee and Dr. Ron Schmid which theorizes that eating, for example, kidneys, will support your own kidney health*.
Radioisotope labeling studies in animals have shown conclusively that, when eaten, organs and glands selectively travel to the corresponding organs and glands in high concentrations. This research, done at the University of Scotland in Edinburgh, lends credence to the ancient practice of eating animal organs to help ensure health in one’s corresponding organs..." - Dr. Ron Schmid, ND
It could even bring you back from the dead!
In the Handbook of Native American Mythology, there's a Comanche story about a man who loved his wife so much that when she died, he fed her the fresh kidney of a buffalo and then she came back to life.
Okay, okay, it probably doesn't resurrect people or it would be called the Jesus organ or something but there are other Native American stories that show the kidney going to those who are sick, so there is a consistency in our past that this organ was particularly useful in nourishing.
Yeah, that's all great and wonderful, but.......won't it taste like urine???? Even promises of perfect health would not get me to eat urine-soaked anything (although someone would!).
Andy says I just need to boil the piss out of it and it'll be fine. hahaha, a little kidney humor for you.
But actually, you soak kidneys to remove some of the strong tastes AND you could start with kidneys from younger or smaller animals that are naturally milder if you'd prefer to start in an even safer place.
But, you gotta start somewhere and I figured frying any organ in lard is a pretty safe place to start.
I used beef kidneys because I like to live life on the edge (obviously). After I chopped them up I soaked them in cold water with a little apple cider vinegar and while they did have a mineral-y taste it was mild (milder then liver) and, most importantly, they did not taste like urine to me.
In fact, I thought they were pretty delicious.
Go here for my Fried Kidney Recipe.
Above: The finished product (my first batch ever - not so bad!). As you can see, they are tasty little nutrient-dense morsels! Serve with a horseradish or garlicky dipping sauce as an appetizer or snack.
Still not convinced but you do totally understand that you should be eating organs?
Try our Ground Beef with the organs blended right into it! A super easy swap!
This is a new product for us so a quick recap of my thoughts on it: when you cook it, you can smell the liver, when you eat it all by itself you can taste liver but if you put it in something you can't taste it (especially if you don't know it's in there!).
So, feeling brave or maybe just curious?
If nothing else, kidney is just kind of fun to play with - it's odd with all of its drupelet-like sections (like on a berry). Pro-tip: I did find it easiest to use a scissors instead of a knife to prep it.
Don't forget to use the tags like "sugar-free" to help you navigate through all the clean products Together Farm's offers.
Order by midnight on Sunday for pickup or home delivery next week!
And if you do decide to try something new, please share those recipes and pictures with me!!
Wishing you health & happiness!!