Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Chicken Liver with Boiled Potatoes and a Pinch of Berbere Spices

Let's talk about the most hateful children foods. For me, the top of the list was liver, any kind of liver, followed by spinach and lamb too. However, I am trying little by little to come along with those foods simply through the act of cooking them. Spinach is getting better, lamb I can accept once in a while, but the liver...it is a very hard job.
I still remember how desperate my poor mother was when once while cleaning the house discovered on the back of the coach small pieces from the very expensive and much praised liver she fought hard to get it on our table. Times changed and I am living now in a place where I can much easier find some kosher liver, but my relationship with this food was never better. Only the sight of the bloody liver - and the memory of the metallic taste (after all, liver operates as a sponge where all the toxines in the body are filtered and it is also that part of the body with the highest concentration of blood, which does not go away even though kashering) made me instantly puke. 
But there are some good healthy advantages of eating liver too, the most important being the high-concentration of iron, which is a great immunity boost. For the love of my son, though, I may change a lot of things in my life - and my diet too, therefore I gave my first ever try at cooking chicken liver myself. And eating it too, for the first time in over 16 years (yeah, I was a teen when I had it last). To be honest, it wasn't that bad - maybe the touch of Berbere spices from Spice Kitchen UK changed everything, who knows - and combined with some simple boiled potato and fresh slices of tomatoes was actually a very rich meaty meal. All you need to know is that you may need a lot of time for boiling and frying the liver, in order to be sure that the blood is going out. The combination of the Berbere spices (red chilli, garlic, coriander seeds, fenugreek, black peppercorns, cloves, paprika, onion powder, black cardamom, nutmeg, cinnamon, all spices and salt) with fried onions, oil and paprika challenged for good the original liver good. 

2 tablespoon cooking oil
1 medium-sized onion, finely chopped
1 medium-sized yellow bell pepper sliced
600 gr. chicken liver, frozen
2 tablespoon Berbere spices
1 tablespoon lemon juice - it helps when the meat is frozen as it may have a specific unpleasant taste

Pre-heat the oil in the pan for about 10 minutes. Add the onions and fry until golden. Add the paprika and keep mixing for another couple of minutes. Add the liver, the Berbere spices and 1 big cup of water and let to boil. Mix once in a while, to be sure that the ingredients mix well. Boil until the liver gets a dark brown colour. 

I personally prefered to balance the liver taste with some fresh veggies and the boiled potato. Mashed potatoes also work, or some green salad or avocado. I would dare to add even some couscous or boiled carrots. The most important is to do not have a flavor overload, but only to find that right balance between different ingredients. 
Verdict? As I will not change too much my opinion about liver -it would take another century until I will think about doing my own beef liver anyway and tasting it too - for health reasons I would actually love to try it at least a couple of times the year. With Pesach holidays coming up in a couple of weeks only, I would probably include the chicken liver on one of my regular menus for this time of the Jewish year. 

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour or until ready
Serves: 3

Bon App├ętit!