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Chicken livers: Any great recommendations?

t
teezeetoo Jan 26, 2011 09:35 AM

i love the chicken livers at Solea (with bacon, onions, crispy, yummy). I'd love to hear other places with great renditions.

  1. j
    jessabella617 Jan 31, 2011 10:14 AM

    Go to Erbaluce and sit at the bar. A huge portion for something like $10. Easily a meal with their delicious bread

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    Erbaluce
    69 Church Street, Boston, MA 02116

    1. itaunas Jan 31, 2011 05:55 AM

      My favorite chopped liver in the area is at Arthur's in Chelsea which is heaven with a bit of mild onion. They now make it in house which they didn't in the past and it makes it eating there solo difficult because their corned beef (and tongue, and salami) are excellent too. Rendezvous usually has pate, mousse or livers themselves on the menu and Green Street was doing them for a while, as mentioned East Coast Grill has offered them forever. Also if you look back past posts from Joanie she was always on the hunt for good chicken livers and a big fan of them at Davio's.

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      East Coast Grill and Raw Bar
      1271 Cambridge St, Cambridge, MA 02139

      1. Boston_Otter Jan 30, 2011 06:01 AM

        I'm a fan of the Higadillos de Pollo at Solea --- livers with sherry on toast.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Boston_Otter
          t
          teezeetoo Jan 30, 2011 07:14 AM

          yes, that's exactly the dish that started my quest. i think solea's version is great.

          1. re: teezeetoo
            Boston_Otter Jan 31, 2011 05:30 AM

            Actually, of all places, Pemberton Farms on Mass Ave in Somerville/Cambridge often has excellent chicken livers in the deli. They're smothered in onions and crispy on the edges.

        2. h
          hckybg Jan 28, 2011 07:21 PM

          Had a pretty interesting chicken liver dish at East by Northeast last night. Deep fried morsel sized pieces with yellow radishes and bacon. The initial taste was of the fried breading, then the rich liver taste at the same time that the bacon sunk in. Really interesting. It wasn't on the menu--it was from the chef--but maybe you could order it if you asked.

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          East by Northeast
          1128 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA 02139

          1. c
            celestialmundane Jan 28, 2011 11:49 AM

            Last week I had "crisped chicken livers florentine
            w/ white polenta & sizzling hot garlic" at Scampo. Delicious.

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            Scampo
            215 Charles Street, Boston, MA 02114

            1. l
              lemons Jan 27, 2011 05:52 AM

              I am in awe of what Boston has to offer in the way of chicken livers. Lucky youse!

              1. s
                Spenbald Jan 30, 2011 02:40 PM

                Similar, although I think they might market it as pâté, Central Bottle's rendition is good enough to eat almost the entire tub in one sitting. Slightly sweet, with a generous layer of congealed fat on top. Perfect with an Iggy's ficelle.

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                Central Bottle
                196 Massachusetts Ave, Boston, MA 02115

                1. n
                  nightsky Jan 26, 2011 06:22 PM

                  Higaditos Mexicanos at Sol Azteca are astoundingly good.

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                  Sol Azteca
                  914A Beacon Street, Boston, MA 02215

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: nightsky
                    t
                    teezeetoo Jan 27, 2011 02:05 AM

                    thanks all. i'm going to try as many of your suggestions as I can get to.

                    1. re: nightsky
                      BobB Jan 31, 2011 11:57 AM

                      I'll second that. Best dish in the place. It's an appetizer but they'll make you an entree-sized portion if you ask.

                    2. MC Slim JB Jan 26, 2011 04:20 PM

                      The Franklin Cafe (South End original) does a seared soy-marinated chicken liver app that is fantastic.

                      Koliza Singara at Darul Kabab near Porter Square is basically a samosa of coarsely chopped chicken liver with a couple of little chutneys for dipping that is fantastic, and $1.50. Thanks for that great tip, Hounds! (Phoenix review forthcoming.)

                      Trattoria Toscana and Coppa both do a lovely little crostini di fegato.

                      Chicken liver pates of one sort or another show up on charcuterie plates all over town, e.g., at Eastern Standard.

                      http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

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                      Trattoria Toscana
                      130 Jersey St, Boston, MA 02215

                      Eastern Standard
                      528 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02215

                      Coppa
                      253 Shawmut Ave, Boston, MA 02118

                      Darul Kabab
                      2072 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02140

                      11 Replies
                      1. re: MC Slim JB
                        Prav Jan 26, 2011 06:25 PM

                        Is Darul's koliza singara liver-y tasting? (in a good way of course - I do like liver) - 'cause I find meat samosas in general to be suuuuper bland. It sounds delicious.

                        I had Highland Cafe's chopped liver with cornichons and toast, and it was rich, smooth and lovely.

                        1. re: Prav
                          MC Slim JB Jan 26, 2011 06:28 PM

                          To the extent that chicken liver is liver-y, which I would say is not very, as livers go. Like most of the food, it tastes very fresh; lots of nice cilantro in there.

                          http://mcslimjb.blogspot.com/

                          1. re: MC Slim JB
                            f
                            FoodDabbler Jan 30, 2011 11:19 AM

                            I was finally able to get some of the liver samosas. (They are often out.) I was a bit disappointed. While you're right that chicken liver is not the liveriest of livers, the suspiciously uniform bits of liver in the samosas were overcooked almost to the point of rubbery tastelessness. The cilantro was nice, but most of the taste came from the potato that's also in the samosa.

                            I say this knowing that Indian cuisines often overcook (by Western standards) organ meats and fish. I don't mind that. A chewy bit of liver or a chewy bit of well fried, well spiced fish is as appealing to me as a moist, meltingly tender morsel. But, as with everything, you can over do it, and based on one experience Darul does.

                            Prav: I know what you're saying about meat samosas. It's a particular problem with meat samosas in the U.S. because they all seem to follow the Punjabi samosa model: large, samosas with the filling encased in thick, short-pastry. Meat samosas in some parts of India are encased in very thin pastry sheets (not quite filo thin, but heading there), and fried till the pastry is cracklingly crisp. The spicing of the meat stands out better.

                            1. re: FoodDabbler
                              chickendhansak Feb 10, 2011 11:42 AM

                              I had a couple of those chicken liver samosas last night and they were pretty good. I didn't notice any potato in mine -- they seemed pretty dense with the chopped liver. Something in there that had the texture of almonds or maybe pine nuts too. Not sure what that is.

                              The chicken seekh kebab was good too -- and a very generous portion for the money with four pieces of strongly spiced kebab and four piping hot fresh slices of naan.

                              1. re: chickendhansak
                                Prav Feb 10, 2011 12:12 PM

                                Man, that's good to know - I've a nut allergy. I've never heard of any sort of nuts / badam / pine nuts inside a samosa! I'll ask them and see if I can get further clarification.

                                I've been really thinking of getting one of those liver-y samosas.

                                1. re: Prav
                                  chickendhansak Feb 10, 2011 01:23 PM

                                  Well, like I said, it was a texture thing, and I didn't poke around too much to work out exactly what it was. But since you have an allergy I'm glad to have given you a reason to check. FWIW I thought they had a good, subtle liver flavour.

                                2. re: chickendhansak
                                  f
                                  FoodDabbler Feb 10, 2011 01:22 PM

                                  Perhaps they are experimenting with combinations. We had the veg samosas at the same time and the potato filling there was also distinctly in the liver ones. Was your liver rubbery? I've not had nuts in samosas either, but some types of potato filling, usually in South Indian dishes (such as masala dosa), have al dente bits of lentil in them (black urad dal, and red-brown channa dal). Were the nutty bits in your samosa apparently chopped fine or were they almond or pine nut sized?

                                  1. re: FoodDabbler
                                    chickendhansak Feb 10, 2011 01:44 PM

                                    Now that this is coming under some scrutiny, I'm disappointed to say I didn't actually look at the bits in question. I do eat a lot of dal (including the kinds you mention) and I didn't find the texture similar, but I really am not sure what it was. Like both of you, I would be surprised if it actually was a pine nut. I suppose I should go back, try another one and see if I can identify what it was.

                                    1. re: chickendhansak
                                      Prav Feb 10, 2011 03:27 PM

                                      Ah, a true chowhound! Thanks! :)

                                      1. re: chickendhansak
                                        f
                                        FoodDabbler Feb 10, 2011 03:40 PM

                                        I'm guessing you may know this, but dal when used as a flavoring or for textural contrast has a different toothfeel than when cooked normally. As a flavoring it's sizzled in hot oil (or ghee) along with popping mustard seeds, etc., then added to what it's meant to flavor and cooked briefly. The "grains" soften slightly, but retain their shape and resistance. They have a texture similar to chopped pine nuts, which is why I thought of them.

                                        Having said that, this flavoring technique is used mainly for vegetarian dishes, so it is likely not what you experienced.

                                        1. re: FoodDabbler
                                          chickendhansak Feb 11, 2011 06:37 AM

                                          I've cooked split urad dal this way (for poriyal), so I know what you mean. Like I say I will go round again and try another.

                          2. mangorita Jan 26, 2011 03:21 PM

                            I like the chicken liver appetizer at El Sarape in Braintree. They arecooked up with tomatoes and onions. Perfect with a margarita and some tortilla chips.

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                            El Sarape
                            5 Commercial St, Braintree, MA 02184

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: mangorita
                              m
                              mwk Jan 28, 2011 09:36 AM

                              I was going to say the same about El Sarape. I get that liver appetizer every time I go. It's delicious.

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                              El Sarape
                              5 Commercial St, Braintree, MA 02184

                              1. re: mwk
                                rubysdad Feb 10, 2011 05:54 PM

                                I would like to "third" this recommendation. Higaditos Mexicanos at El Serape would have to be among the best chicken livers in the Greater Boston are. They have a bit of grilled crust on the outside but are still pink (may we say this without the germ police swooping in?) at the center. Try them!!

                            2. e
                              emilief Jan 26, 2011 03:14 PM

                              Davios has a good chicken liver appetizer.

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                              Davio's
                              75 Arlington Street, Boston, MA 02116

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: emilief
                                hotoynoodle Jan 26, 2011 08:39 PM

                                2nd davio's.

                                1. re: hotoynoodle
                                  y
                                  yanz Feb 11, 2011 07:43 AM

                                  3rd Davio's. And the portion is huge (crispy fried).

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                                  Davio's
                                  75 Arlington Street, Boston, MA 02116

                              2. d
                                DanW Jan 26, 2011 12:06 PM

                                The East Coast Grill does a chipotle-glazed chicken liver app that is a favorite of mine. The livers are deep-fried and have a bit of heat. They are served with crispy, salty, very thin onion rings, sweet and sour greens with bacon, and an orange marmalade. I haven't been able to go to the ECG for too long, so the app may have changed a little.

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                                East Coast Grill and Raw Bar
                                1271 Cambridge St, Cambridge, MA 02139

                                1. rlove Jan 26, 2011 10:30 AM

                                  The buffalo chicken livers (chicken livers breaded and served like chicken wings, doused in wing sauce) at The Gallows are rich yet balanced and quite addictive. Highly recommended.

                                  I also really like the chicken liver pâté at La Voile. Very liver-y, rich, unctuous. Reminiscent of liver pâtés in France--not for those not fully bullish on liver.

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                                  La Voile
                                  261 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: rlove
                                    s
                                    sdwr98 Jan 27, 2011 05:34 AM

                                    I also highly recommend the buffalo chicken livers at The Gallows. Also the chicken liver crostini at Trattoria Toscana was fantastic.

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                                    Trattoria Toscana
                                    130 Jersey St, Boston, MA 02215

                                  2. SeaSide Tomato Jan 26, 2011 10:19 AM

                                    I love, love love the chicken liver salad at Alba Deli on Hancock St. In Quincy--just north of the square. Like a very loose pate. Delicious--buy it by weight or get it in a tasty sandwhich--or both!

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                                    Alba Deli
                                    1085 Hancock St, Quincy, MA 02169

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