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Frank Bailey's Beef heart Recipe
For all of you wanting to make your own beef heart, this is the way I make it. Since I now only feed it to the pairs, I don't make a large batch anymore. I purchase 2-3 pkgs. of beefheart(3-4lbs) at the local supermarket. At the meat or deli section, I purchase 1-1 1/2lbs of large shrimp (this acts as a binder and keeps all the mix together), 1 can of spinach(8oz), paprika(for color), liquid vitamins, small jar of wheat germ (great for getting the males fertile, vit e), and freeze dried krill. Optional: banana, apple.
You must defat the beef heart. All fat, gristle is removed from beef heart. So 3-4lbs of beef heart will now be 1 1/2-2 lbs. Shrimp is deshelled. I then add this to a food processor with spinach(drained) and mix well. From here I use a large bowl and add 1 tsp paprika, 1 tsp vitamins, 1 tbl spoon of wheat germ, and 3 tbl of krill to the beef heart and shrimp mix. Mix this all well adding a little water to the bowl to get it moist. Now I use large baggies and place the beef heart mix in them. For a small "mix" such as this I would use about 3-4 baggies. When you add mix to baggies, spread it out so you have a thin layer of mix in the baggies about 1/4" thick. From here you place in freezer laying flat and let harden for about 6 hours before using. When feeding Discus, I use a knife and cut a thin piece of heart and add to tank. I do not thaw heart mix before using. This works well for me. Hope this helps. I have used "HORMONE" free and with hormones added beef heart, and have not seen any difference in my Discus Appearance, spawning etc.
Frank Bailey (Bailey Discus)
Bing Seto's Beef heart Recipe
I recently visited Bing Seto's "Discus World" hatchery in Alemeda, CA. He gave me permission to publish the beef heart recipe he uses for his fish. Obviously, this will need to be scaled for the average hobbyist!
100 pounds of beef heart
50 pounds of shrimp
25 pounds of "Ginger Spirulina Flakes"
25 pounds of "Ginger Color Flakes"
(Note: In 1995, Bing sold me some of his Pigeon Blood fry. He grew out several of the fry from the same hatch that my own fish came from. I was very surprised to see a deeper red in the finnage compared to my fish. He attributes this to the shrimp in his recipe. Perhaps it could also be the color flakes? In any case, the difference was significant enough for me to decide to start feeding more than the Tetra Bits, bloodworms, and egg-based formulas that I have been experimenting with.)
Chad Fontaine's Beefheart Recipe
The mix I use for my Discus is as follows. It is a culmination of many and can be adjusted as seen fit, although the preparation method listed, in great length, is the best I've found for any variation.
1/2 Beef Heart (raw)
12 Prawns (uncooked w/shells) (can be substituted for raw shrimp w/shells)
Spinach (approxamate liquified quantity as prawns)
Split Peas (simmered until tender, same quantity as spinach)
4 tbsp. Oat Bran (cooked smooth)
4 tbsp. Wheat Germ (raw)
2 tbsp. Gelatin powder (I use 2 packets of "Knox unflavored gelatine")
First thoroughly clean any evidence of fat, gristle or sinew from the beef heart and chop into suitable size chunks to fit into your blender, probably 1" square pieces. These are now frozen in order that the blender may do a better job of cutting rather then tearing or liquifing. Once frozen place the beef heart chunks into the blender and grind until the heart is fine but still chunky. Avoid liquifying as it will be more apt to foul the water when fed. This can now be set aside in the refrigerator.
The next step are the liquified ingredients. The prawns/shrimp should be thrown in the blender raw, shells and all. These are liquified as much as possible, I've found that adding a little water is sometimes needed. Strain the paste to take out any remaining large particles, usually chunks of shell that the fish wont eat anyways. I read once that large particles or heavy sinews could strange small fishes, not worth taking the chance anyways.
The green ingredients will be next. I don't yet include the peas in my own mix but they are high in vitamins and protein which is good for fish requiring a higher green content, a good idea either way. The split peas should be simmered until tender and then liquified. The spinach should be thouroughly washed and also liquified, this might take the addition of a little water that can be poured out later. If need be the greens can be strained to remove chunks and strands.
The oat bran should be cooked a little, just until smooth. When done scoop the oat bran into a large bowl along with the raw wheat germ, the bowl needs to be big enough for all the ingredients. Now mix in the beef heart and the prawns/shrimp. The finished mix should appear as a very heavy soupy substance the consistancy of freshly cooked oatmeal but not runny. This is why the greens should now be added last. You can add them until the mix reaches the right consistancy or what I do is just add more wheat germ to thicken it up if it ends up too watery.
This stinky, bloody mixture beside you will now be cooked so it can coagulate, otherwise it would immediately foul the aquarium. This is best done using a double boiler, a large pot set on the stove filled 1/2 or so with water floating a smaller pot containing the the ingredients. This is best as it avoids any possible burning of the mix which is not good for the fish. The final ingredient, the gelatin, can be added once the mix is hot and has gone brown. Put it in a cold mix and it will set in your pot like a big blob of stinky beef jello . The mix should be cooked until it starts to appear grainy and tends to separate a little when stirred. Keep in mind the mix is better left too wet than too dry because the gelatin will do a better job of holding a wet mix together. Too dry and the gel effect will be reduced.
Once cooked the mix is spread out approximately 1/4 inch thick on a cookie sheet and left to cool. When cool, cut into squares that will slide into zip-loc bags. These can now be bagged and placed into the freezer. When feeding cut off a piece suitable for that one feeding and place the rest back into the freezer as soon as possible, as food that is repeatedly thawed and frozen will be turned down or make the fish ill. Using a sharp knife you can shave slivers off the frozen portion directly into the tank. The food will warm up almost imediately upon contact with the water. The result is quite suffecient as your fish will pick it apart readily. What I personally do that leaves as little uneaten food as possible to go bad in the tank is to chop the still frozen mix into (fish)bite size pieces with a sharp knife and then feed it as fast as they can eat it. It is swallowed rather then bit off larger pieces and what does get by, bottom feeders will make short work of.
Medications and vitamins can be added to a specially prepared mix or what seems easiest is to let it soak into or paint onto the "bite size pieces" and then refrozen until feeding time. The later method seems best as it is much easier to regulate the concentration of the vitamins or medication keeping to the manufacturers directions avoiding under or overdosing.
Good Luck, Enjoy and Happy Fishkeeping!!!...........
Tony Griffitts' Beefheart Recipe
4 lbs Beef Heart
8 oz Freeze Dried Krill
4 to 6 tsp Kent Zoe Freshwater Vitamins
Small amount of Water for processing
The krill is processed first in a meat grinder, which turns it into a powder. Then the beef heart is ground twice. I then add the powdered krill and the vitamins to the beef heart. I then mix it all together adding water to soften the texture, and then I run it through the meat grinder one more time. I then flatten it out in a zip lock bagy to not more than a 1/4 inch and than I freeze it. After it has been frozen for 24 hours I remove a bag from the freezer and process it through a Salad Shooter for the small discus and then refreeze.
Since I started adding krill to the beef heart mix, I've noticed an explosion in growth. One fish that I thought would end up as runt, and was about to be given away, has had very noticeable increase in size and can no longer be considered a runt.
Sacramento, CA, USA
David Ivancic's Beefheart Recipe
[The following was contributed in July, 1995. Since this contribution, David has come to the conclusion that the "beef heart" portion should be eliminated and replaced with chicken heart, turkey heart, or more beef liver.]
6 parts double ground beafheart(fat & sinew removed)
2 parts blended liver(beef or veal)
1 part blended shrimp
1 part Plankton from Gamma Foods (about 5 packages)
spinach or powdered chitin (lobster)
Epson salts 1/4 tsp.
powdered spirulina (health food store)
Kent Marine Zoe vitamins
Garlic 1 tsp. (from small bottle of crushed garlic)
Mix double dose of gelatin in required water and bring to boil. Add liver.. to coagulate blood, once small clumps appear then add the rest of ingredients.. cook over medium until mixture reaches around 45 degrees centigrade. Final mix should be a very thick poridge. Put in medium freezer bags and make the mix about 1/8 inch thick in the bags so it will be easy to break off once frozen. Make enough for three months to ensure freshness. Garlic is to prevent worms and plankton brings out the red colors in discus.
Transplant Research Laboratory
Ronan-Yann Lorin's Beefheart Recipe
Ronan-Yann was kind enough to translate this recipe from french.
1 kg beefheart (chop, uncooked)
200 g oat bran
200 g spinach (boiled)
2 g paprika
some drops multivitamen Hydrosol (Hydrosol Roche 20 ml/l)
3 ampoules B 12 Delagrange vitamin *
3 pills iron (fumarate or citrate)
* Delagrange is a brand name, and an ampoule is a glass vial approaximately the size of a small test tube. (Perhaps 5 ml?)
As you may be aware, I am currently growing on some discus. Obviously, the better the foods that are provided, the better growth that will be sustained. Beefheart has long been championed as the best food for growth, although you can also use pig heart and turkey heart. I have recently contacted the hatchery of Jack Wattley and they have Emailed me the formula they use, it is featured below:
1x Ox heart cleaned of all fat and veins.
1x 10 Oz package of frozen spinach. Thaw and squeeze out as much water as possible.
3x large handfulls of dry flake food. Any type Wardley's, Tetra, etc.
6x multi vitamins. (One A Day, Theragram, Centrum, etc.) Wash off the protective coating and let them soak in small cup with enough water to cover them so that they break down into a soup.
6x cloves of raw garlic.
1 small box of unflavoured gelatine (entire contents).
Place ingredients in a food processor. After the paste is done place in freezer bags. When feeding this mix break off a piece and place it on a folded paper towel to thaw. This will drain off any excess blood. Then feed.
Bing Seto's Beefheart Recipe
100 pounds of beefheart
50 pounds of shrimp
25 pounds of "Ginger Spirulina Flakes"
25 pounds of "Ginger Color Flakes"
GRIND AND MIX … FREEZE AND FEED!!