Chicken liver with caramelised onions and parsley
I’ve started to notice how people get a bit squeamish when it comes to seeing bones in meat, marrow in bones, heads on fish, eyes on heads, offal, trotters or intestines. Even if some of these are ingredients in patés, or terrines, charcuterie or broths, there is still a refusal to eat the finished product.
I’m not suggesting that you have a slow cooked pig’s trotter for dinner, topped with finely sliced crispy ears…even though it could be a wonderful dish.
I’m only saying that the more we accept this view, the further we distance ourselves from the animal we eat, from the realities of mass consumption, and ultimately from the authentic flavour of food.
My uncle used to rear pigs on a small farm in the north-west of Romania. Every year he had one for us, and come December, we would spend 3 days there preparing sausages, brawn, terrines, black puddings, leberwurst, cuts for roasting, or preserving in fat, rendering fat, and making pig scratchings for snacking 🙂 This pig was our main source of meat for the whole year.
Wasting or discarding ‘unattractive’ cuts would have been an offence to my uncle, his work and his farm.
In today’s world, embracing ‘provenance’ to support ethical animal farming is what we should do, and there are a few more worthy ways in which we can help these farms.
- 3tbsp oil
- 2 medium-sized onions
- 150ml tomato passata
- 1tsp sugar
- 1 pinch of salt
- 400g chicken liver
- 50ml sherry
- 1tsp paprika
- 1/2 bunch of parsley
Heat the oil in a frying pan and cook the onions until soft. Add the tomato passata, sugar and salt and simmer for about 10 minutes, until it reduces to a thick mixture.
Five minutes before the onions are ready, add a splash of oil in a separate frying pan and heat it well. Now add the liver and fry briefly, turning them on all sides. After 5 minutes (or after they get a nice, firm outside, but still soft in the middle when you press your finger on them) keep the heat on high and add the sherry, allowing it to cook with the liver for 2 minutes.
Take the pan off the heat, stir in the paprika and sprinkle with parsley. Drizzle some of the juices from the pan on top and serve with bread or with mashed potatoes.