But beef tendon is also notoriously difficult to cook. It takes long hours of simmering to get it to that perfect stage of tender chewiness. Overcook it and it melts into the cooking liquid. Using a slow cooker simplifies the process.
Note that the long cooking makes the beef tendons shrink. By the time they are done, you’ll have about half much tendons as you did when you first put them in the slow cooker. Consider that when deciding just how much you need. I recommend erring on the side of more rather than less.
If you prefer to serve the tendons as a soup, cook the tendons only with salt, pepper, garlic and ginger. Instead of water, use bone broth.
Serve the tendons in the cooking broth. Squeeze a lemon quarter over each bowl of beef tendon soup and top with fried garlic and scallions.
Slow cooker Chinese-style beef tendon
- 500 grams whole beef tendons - rinsed well
- ¼ cup soy sauce - divided
- 1 half-inch knob ginger
- 3 cloves garlic
- ⅛ teaspoon peppercorns
- 1 star anise
- 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
- sugar to taste
- chili oil - homemade or store-bought
- sliced scallions - to garnish
- fried garlic
- Line the bottom of the slow cooker with non-stick paper.
- Arrange the beef tendons in the paper-lined pot.
- Pour in half of the soy sauce.
- Add the ginger, garlic, star anise and peppercorns then pour in just enough water to cover.
- Cook the beef tendons on HIGH for about eight hours, or on LOW for about 12 hours.
- Scoop the beef tendons from the broth and cool (do not discard the broth; you can add it to soup).
- Cut the beef tendons into bite-size pieces and arrange on small plates.
- Mix together the remaining soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, as much or as little chili oil as you like and just enough sugar to create a good balance of flavors.
- Drizzle the sauce over the beef tendons.
- Serve your Chinese-style beef tendons at room temperature or heat in the steamer for a few minutes.
- Sprinkle scallions and fried garlic before serving.