It's sort of the Swiss Army knife of edible parts. You've got meat packed inside all those crevices, cheeks and, depending on the animal, jowls. You've got bones with all those essential nutrients. And last but certainly not least, you've got offal: tongues, sometimes skin, eyes and brains!
People who don't like liver and kidneys tend - wrongly - to include far milder-flavored sweetbreads on their list of aversions, while those who love those things often say they find sweetbreads lackluster and not worthy of their attention.
I felt like I had been punched in the gut. Suddenly, through unfiltered, raw emotion, I felt, quite frankly, like a cold-blooded murderer waking up to the reality of what he had done. I nearly threw up.
This year I am going to have a second holiday meal... in the late evening... at a wonderful Italian restaurant. Not that I will be hungry, but I want to support the new chef there, who has initiated a series of startling 'concept dinners.'