Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Comfort Food: Sauteed Chicken Livers

When summer?

This wind has been blowing for a week now non-stop. It knocks down fences, falls trees; my flower pots fly across the back yard. And it's cold.
This weather is driving all life out of me. I need comfort. Food.

Chicken liver is one of the least glamorous foods, it's cheap, people think it's not healthy, and it doesn't look like much. But it's tasty, and it keeps you warm. Here I used a few fancier ingredients like duck fat (left over from cooking foie gras and kept in the freezer) and truffle oil to add shine to this old-style home cooking, but it would actually be as comforting without all this, just use half butter - half olive oil for sauteeing.

Sauteed Chicken Livers with Marsala and Truffle Mushed Potatoes
serves 2
1 lb chicken livers, dried with paper towels and trimmed
2 Tbsp duck fat or 1 Tbsp butter and 1 Tbsp olive oil
2 shallots, minced
1/2 cup Marsala
salt, pepper

for the mushed potatoes:
8 new Yukon Gold potatoes, with skins
3 Tbsp heavy cream
1 small bunch of flat-leaf parsley, minced, plus 2 sprigs for serving
salt, pepper
6 drops of white truffle oil

Boil the potatoes in lightly salted water until tender, checking with a fork. Drain. Place the potatoes in a bowl, add the cream and minced parsley, coarsly mash with a fork, skin and all.
Season with salt, pepper and truffle oil. Keep warm.

In a large heavy pan over medium heat melt the duck fat or butter and oil. Add chicken livers. Make sure the pot is large enough to hold all the livers in one layer. Sautee until golden-brown.
Add shallots, Marsala, season with salt and pepper, reduce the heat. Cook until the wine is reduces by half, about 10-15 minutes.

Serve over the mushed potatoes, with a glass of wine, by the fireplace.

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