We live in one of the few nations where wicked animal innards are dumped into feed troughs so livestock can engage in fun cannibalism. Our loss. But thanks to the wonders of open borders, the county now teems with communities that use offal in disgustingly tasty ways. A list:
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: Cow hearts you can purchase from any respectable butcher; chicken hearts on a stick are only at Amazon Churrascaria. 1445 S. Lemon St. Fullerton. (714) 447-1200Brain: The bitter lamb-brain mankousheh (Lebanese sandwich) at Victory Bakery is chilled inside, slathered in pungent garlic sauce, and dusted with so much parsley your teeth will take on a healthy green glow. 951 S. Euclid St., Anaheim, (714) 776-4493Sweetbreads: Why a cow's pancreas is known as sweetbread is bizarre, as it's neither sugary nor yeasty. At least the Gaucho Grill incinerates its sweetbreads beyond perplexing etymology and into the realm of the scrumptious. 210 W. Birch St., Ste. 102, Brea. (714) 990-9140Kidney: Yes, luv: the Olde Ship Pub & Restaurant in Fullerton includes bonnie fidie kidney in its steak and kidney pie. Urinary splendor! 709 N. Harbor Blvd. Fullerton, (714) 871-7447.Tongue: In Kareem's extraordinary pitas, lamb tongue assumes all the qualities a tongue should exhibit: soft, forgiving, capable of sharing a love with you that dare not speak its name. 1208 S. Brookhurst St., Anaheim, (714) 778-6829.Digestive-tract fun: If you don't get in line before 9 a.m. on Saturday at El Camino Real in Fullerton—Kobe Bryant's favorite Mexican restaurant!—you won't get a potful of its sticky menudo. And then you will cry. 303 N. Euclid St., Fullerton. (714) 447-3962.Tendons: Like a sour, slippery beef jerky, except you're probably fighting off track stars desperate for a transplant when buying a pound of the organic rubber bands at Northgate Supermarket. 720 W. La Palma Ave., Anaheim, (714) 563-0721.Lungs: Stir-fried along with lamb heart, kidney and liver, the lamb lung in Noorani Halal Tandoori's kata kat is much like its native Pakistan: aggressive and ambiguous, but altogether alluring. 14178 Brookhurst St., Garden Grove, (714) 636-1000.Blood: Quaker Oats, my ass: the best grain-based breakfast in town is the unctuous pork-blood porridge at BB Restaurant, so sanguine even Nosferatu would make a daytime cameo to sink his fangs in. 880 W. Lincoln Ave., Anaheim, (714) 774-1931.Ears: You can order pickled pork flappers in any of Thai Hot Pot & BBQ's crunchy salads—just ask! 1739 W. La Palma Ave., Anaheim, (714) 956-8444.Liver: Dunarea's chicken risotto—thin slices of mineral-intense chicken liver wrapped around an Epcot Center-sized ball of rice pilaf. Its only match for iron content is a Pittsburgh steel mill. 821 N. Euclid Ave., Anaheim, (714) 772-7233.