Offal: liver, kidneys, brains. It does not make me lick my lips and start to salivate. In fact, until a few years ago I would have gone to great lengths to avoid eating anything from an unusual part of an animal. Yet now I find myself thinking of whimsical ideas to prepare these more unusual cuts for my family. What is going on?!
Quite simply, I’m sold on the high nutritional value of offal. There’s no getting away from the fact that there is much more good stuff packed into a piece of liver than a piece of steak. Unlike most super healthy food, it also tends to be super cheap since liver is rejected by most brits (although fascinatingly it has become a booming export outside the EU see here and here).
My youngest daughter weaned into super healthy/ weird food will eat a piece of fried liver on its own. The rest of my family are not so keen! my first liver ‘success story’ was with a Jamie Oliver recipe for chicken liver bolognese. A variation on this recipe has become my go to recipe for bolognese. It is actually, genuinely delicious and in my humble opinion much tastier than bolognese made with just mince. I now add liver to meatballs and keep ice cubes of frozen liver in my freezer to secretly pop into whatever I may be making with mince.
If at any point in your life you decide to start trying to sneak liver into your family’s diet may I suggest you do the same?
- liver of choice (I find it is easiest to start with chicken liver)
- lemon juice
- Start by soaking the liver in lemon juice and water for a few hours then rinse.
- Remove any undesirable bits (membranes etc).
- Blitz in a food processor with a bit of water until smooth (warning: this will not look pleasant!)
- Tip into an ice cube tray and freeze until required