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Nov 11, 2011 02:04 PM

Lusting for livers, from chickens. How best we do them? Kept whole, not pate'.

I'm a stir fry guy, and also tried steaming, but I'm looking for livers made medium rare. Your ideas of techniques and combinations? Remember... Whole... or at last limits, bequartered.

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  1. I fry them up (whole -- those are not big livers, dude) in goose fat, duck fat or butter, sometimes bacon, seasoned with just some s&p, maybe a light flour dusting.

    Deglaze with whatever I feel like or what's around -- sherry, marsala, red wine, port, balsamic. Then I eat them out of the pan. Ok, a plate will work, too.

    Nothing fancy, nothing complicated, just good eats. IF I felt inclined, I think brown butter & sage would work quite well. Obvious companions are caramelized onions and apples, at least for this German here.

    3 Replies
    1. re: linguafood

      Try fixing them in brandy or cognac for a real taste sensation; flambe optional.

      1. re: mucho gordo

        Yep, done that, too. Whatever's in the liquor cabinet. Well, almost. NO single malts in my livers.

      2. re: linguafood

        I like that!! Now you got me having Chicken liver on my brain.....

      3. this is my mom's recipe for calves' liver -- I have no idea where she found it -- but it's also awesome with chicken livers, then served over rice.

        IMO, cooking the livers with something else seems to lock in the moisture that is so important to having tasty, tender livers, rather than rock-hard little pieces of nasty.

        Stir-frying and steaming are too hot, and make the livers tough.

        1. Oh.. what if they're chopped, not pate? Because one of the very best things in the entire world as far as I'm concerned is Dirty Rice. I make it every year for the "Holiday Feasts" held at school (public school in a tiny blip on the map in rural western Texas: think "not super Chowish") and always hesitate to do so, because chopped liver.. well, you know. Someone always asks for the recipe, then is all a-flutter over having just eaten three servings of liver.

          But if you get the balance right, you know you're eating chicken livers (which I love fried as you'd fry chicken, by the way - buttermilk, flour, seasonings, hot fat) but at the same time, it's not quite that liver-y.

          1. Just made this today because I was seriously craving it:

            Slice an onion and fry it and the whole chicken livers in a pan with a little olive oil. Deglaze the pan with balsamic. Add sour cream and some more balsamic to create a sauce. Add green peas and serve over pasta.

            1. Dredge in seasoned flour, pan fry with neutral oil or butter. Once livers are done remove from pan. Make a light cream chicken gravy. Serve over rice. (This is one dish where I prefer white rice rather than brown.)

              This is one of my favorite quick, cheap "I'm alone and can eat whatever I want" meals!

              2 Replies
              1. re: meatn3

                I love of the liver that comes from the chicken
                I saute mine in butter to make my heart quicken
                they must be pink (not red) inside
                and couldn't ever be considered slim pickin.'

                Seriously: rinse them, trim off any fat or discolored parts, and dry well. Shake in a paper bag with a cup of seasoned flour (ap flour, salt/pepper, dash paprika), and saute over medium heat in foaming melted butter. When the "juice" (ok, blood) begins to seep to the surface, it's time to turn them over and give them a go on the other side for about a minute and a half or two; when poked gingerly w. your spatula, they should have some "give" - not soft, but certainly not fully firm. They are best when a lovely rosy pink in the middle. And if you must gild that lily, saute some bacon and onions first, and use the resultant grease to saute the livers in. I love meatn3's cream gravy idea - have never done it, but now I'm going to.
                I have to eat mine when I'm alone too. :) Livah. Love it, or leave it.