I have very occasional cravings for beef liver and onions but I've never made that myself - it's one of those things I look for when I find myself in an old fashioned country restaurant.
I also grew up on liverwurst and braunschweiger (which is pretty much the same thing, only lightly smoked), which are made with pork liver, and managed to even turn Michael (who thought he was a liver hater) onto the joys of liverwurst and cheese on crackers.
So - I am not liver adverse at all... but I am somewhat liver intimidated when I comes to cooking with it at home.
I was somewhat hopeful that now that he'd discovered he liked liverwurst, Michael might find out he was similarly fine with chicken livers, so I decided to try a recipe for chicken liver pate, using a pound of livers we'd bought at the farm.
Let be right up front - he took one bite and pronounced it 'way too livery' - and it is very livery, so this is for someone who loves liver. I'm eating it and enjoying it, but it is quite rich, took a bit of time to do, and I probably would have been happier just sauteing them whole and eating them with eggs some night while he had bacon. (Oh who am I kidding - I'd have had them with the bacon, too.) Proving that I am quite capable of still feeling mildly deflated if I'm the only one who likes what I make even though my kids are now out of the house and no longer accusing me of poisoning them at random intervals. There are so few things Michael doesn't like that I shouldn't feel bad when it happens, but I do. A little. Or at least question my own tastebuds.
But - I was also happy I tried it and maybe will be brave enough to try something similar with beef liver, which may appeal to him more (you never know until you try).
If you'd like to get liver in your diet but aren't sure you can - small dabs of this, cheese (try cream cheese - or some really good goat cheese if you like strong flavors), and some thin slices of pickle on a cracker or rye bread. Strong mustard tastes good with it, too. I'm using rice crackers, but some lettuce or cucumber slices would also work as a base.
|The basic unattractivenes of pate does not really add to its appeal, does it?|
(Makes about 2 cups - enough to fill two ramekins)
2 T. grassfed butter or ghee
1 lb. chicken livers (from pastured chickens - the darker the livers, the healthier the birds)
1/2 a large onion, chopped
1/2 cup red wine
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. dried rosemary
2 tsp. dried thyme
1 T. fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup. grassfed butter (softened)
2 hardcooked eggs, chopped (optional)
cracked black pepper
In the 2 T. of butter or ghee, saute the onions until tender (for a richer flavor, slowly cook them until they are caramelized), then add the livers and continue to cook until just cooked through (don't overcook).
Add the wine, minced garlic, mustard, rosemary, thyme and lemon juice and simmer, uncovered until most of the liquid has evaporated.
Transfer to a food processor, add the softened butter (a Tablespoon at a time), and pulse until a smooth, creamy paste forms - stop adding butter when this occurs. Salt to taste.
Optional: Mix in chopped cooked egg if you'd like, stirring to blend.
Transfer finished pate to ramekins and give each a healthy sprinkle of cracked black pepper.
These will keep about a week, but they can be sealed with a thin layer of melted butter, let cool, and then wrapped tightly and frozen for a couple months.
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