The Domestic Godless

Piglet Brains & Barley Wine

No doubt about it, beer and cooking go a long way back. It is wine however, that is traditionally linked to fine cuisine, and this is something we feel that needs to be addressed. The Japanese have got it right, feeding their cattle ale and massaging their flesh has produced some of the finest beef to be eaten anywhere.



We at the Domestic Godless have classified beer into the following sub-species; fine beers or speciality ales, fighting lager and finally cooking lager. The effect of such beverages on the behaviour of domestic animals has been infamously studied by noted U.S. zoolinguist Hubert Allsop who swore that after several liters (sic) of Mexican lager, his pet boar, Paolo, actually said "What the **** are you looking at?", before becoming uncharacteristically aggressive.


There is one beer however, that stands alone and beyond these 'mere mortals' - BARLEY WINE. This very strong and sweet 'ale' is commonly associated with the elderly in the north of England, for it has two essential qualities that make it particularly attractive;


1. It induces an euphoric misanthropy in the drinker.

2. It is capable of unblocking the tardiest of digestive systems, promoting assured regularity.


We have recently experimented with the effect that barley wine has on the texture of pig's brains. When given to mature animals, the results can be dangerous, but for piglets between 4 and 8 months, the physiological effect on the brain is quite startling. Normally a fairly disappointing and lackluster affair the addled piglet's brain after a weekend of barley wine becomes sweet and creamy not unlike creme-caramel.


The Recipe:


(Note; one pigs brain will do for one person - and you will need 6 oyster shells per person for presentation)


Sit the brains in a shallow pan with about an inch of barley wine. Put a lid on the pan and bring to the boil, then simmer for no more that 2 minutes.



Carefully lift the brains out of the pan with a slotted spoon, chop each into six portions (each should sit comfortably in an oyster shell) and leave aside.


Meanwhile, add a little chopped sage to the pan, boil and reduce the liquor by one half. A little of this should then be spooned into each of the shells. Sprinkle with salt, ground black pepper and crispy fried sage leaves and serve.


Eat from the shell, as with oysters.