I am working on Valentine’s Day feature article on eating hearts (animal hearts, of course). I am curious about how healthy or unhealthy this is.
I would be very grateful if you could supply me with any knowledge that you have on the subject. How should it be prepared? What animals’ hearts are edible? What is the nutritional value of a heart? Who eats them? I know this is very short notice, but I must gather all the information by Tuesday. Thank you so much for your help. I look forward to hearing from you.
The heart is considered an organ meat similar to liver or kidney. It would be about as healthy as eating liver, which contains similar nutritional content. Most people probably wouldn’t eat heart or liver on a daily or even weekly basis in the US, but may in other cultures.
Three ounces (100 gm) contains about 188 calories, 274-mg cholesterol and 5.7 grams of fat. Because it is animal meat, it is a good source of thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, Vitamin B6, phosphorus, iron, and zinc. It is an excellent source of Vitamin B12. The proportions of saturated, mono and unsaturated fats are about equal which is good.
I remember cooking and eating heart in a college food class and we simmered it. However, I’m sure there are better, more tasteful methods of cooking. I remember heart has sinews, but parts are similar to liver. You can eat chicken, turkey, lamb, pork, and calf or beef heart. Chicken is the most tender and can be broiled or cooked in a small amount of fat (sauteed).