Grilled Sweetbreads with Meyer Lemon Oil and Serrano Chilies

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

Jeremiah Tower Cooks

By Jeremiah Tower

Published 2002

  • About

The beauty of grilled sweetbreads is that you leave the membrane on (saving all that work of peeling them), so they hold together on the grill. The grilling cooks off the membrane.


  • 4 whole braised sweetbreads
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon leaves
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • Sea salt
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro, made into sprigs
  • 2 tablespoons Meyer lemon oil
  • 2 fresh green serrano chilies, stemmed, seeded, minced


Mix the olive oil, tarragon, and cardamom together in a bowl. Add the sweetbreads and toss until well coated with the oil. Refrigerate for 2 hours.

Start a wood or charcoal fire, or preheat the broiler.

Salt the sweetbreads and then grill or broil them at medium heat for 8 minutes per side, or until heated through and golden brown on both sides.

Mix the cilantro sprigs with half the lemon oil and the serrano chilies and make nests on warm plates. Put the sweetbreads on the cilantro and serve, drizzling the sweetbreads with the rest of the oil.


Neil Perry, one of the founders of the fabulous new Australian cooking, has developed a wonderful sweetbread upside-down tart, but you will have to go to his Rockpool restaurant in Sydney for that. At home, use your favorite butter or oil sauce to accompany the grilled sweetbreads. Don’t use a wet sauce; you want the sweetbreads to stay crisp. A chili, mushroom, or Montpelier butter will do, as will any of the olive oil and lemon juice sauces in this book.