Thursday, 17 November 2011

Liver, Onion Gravy & Colcannon

I used to hate liver, really really hate it. I think a lot of people do. The taste and texture of overcooked liver, as often served in schools or by grandparents, is not dissimilar to that of soggy cardboard marinated in angostura bitters. 

Properly cooked liver is brilliant though. Even high-welfare organic offal is cheap as chips and, cooked with care, is tender, juicy and delicious.  It's also full of vitamin a, iron and vitamin c.

There are three different kinds of (non-poultry) liver that you can commonly get hold of: pig's, lamb's and calves'. I've had all three and they all cook up a treat, simply prepared as in this recipe.

However, a little note on buying liver... organic liver generally is fine in most cases but be cautious about where you get calves liver from. Make absolutely sure it hasn't come from veal calves whose treatment you wouldn't want to subsidise. Where possible, I'd look for liver from British raised pink or "rose" veal calves. I'll post more on this, rather touchy, subject in the future when I have time to do it justice.

Thickly slice a couple of onions, fry them up until really nice and soft and put them to one side. Make up your gravy using some stock thickened with cornflour and enhanced with a little red wine and redcurrant jelly.

Slice up the liver and fry for literally a minute or so on each side. Be really, really careful not to overcook it, you just want it tender and barely cooked through.

Basic colcannon is just mashed potato with cabbage in. I had leftovers from dinner the night before, so I just mashed them up, added a bit of seasoning and butter and heated them through.

The mash goes first on the plate, then the liver, onions and finally the gravy. Fabulous old-style food at its best.

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