Sweetbreads

Yes, they’re thymus glands, and yes, they’re delicious. Chefs citywide play with the many moods of sweetbreads 
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1. Bashan
At 75 percent cholesterol, sweetbreads are rich. To tone down that intensity, chef Nadav Bashan combines them with a cold relish of piquillo peppers and sun-dried tomatoes. » 3459 N. Verdugo Rd., Glendale, 818-541-1532.

2. La Cachette
Chef Jean Francois Meteigner slowly sautés the normally gamy glands, then serves them alongside a small morel forest with a port reduction. If you close your eyes, you’ll swear this is foie gras. » 10506 Santa Monica Blvd., Century City, 310-470-4992.

3. Spago Beverly Hills
Officially the sweetbread dish comes with an orange-kohlrabi puree, a confit of bacon, and black trumpet mushrooms. But go off-menu and they get dropped into a tamarind-date chutney or penned in with lobster by a parsnip-quince puree. » 176 N. Canon Dr., Beverly Hills, 310-385-0880.

4. Lucques
Cooked up fluffy, tucked into a potato puree, and layered with honeyed vinegar, these sweetbreads taste like eggy challah French toast streaked with Vermont maple syrup. » 8474 Melrose Ave., L.A., 323-655-6277.

Photograph by Edmund Barr