Friday, July 8, 2016

the lab is open - questions about chicken livers

Ever wonder why we were told that liver needed to be soaked in milk before cooking AND the milk had to be discarded after, wasting good milk?
I did and tried to look it up and had some answers that were not satisfactory...
so lets look at what liver is an organ where all the 'toxins" (and there are many natural toxins so do not think that "organic keeps you safe, it doesn't)
It is high in iron because blood filters through it and blood should have iron in it.
Iron as a metal is good for you, BUT it is a BITTER flavor...
so how to reduce it?
In normal physiology calcium does replace and protect the body from harmful heavy metals, like lead. but that is not what is going to happen here in a dead animal.
Vinegar will reduce all metals and so reduce the bitter taste, but how long to soak it and what is the "after flavor"?

Have i gotten too technical yet?

So i started with a 15 minute soak, but found that it was too long because it continued to leech the iron out of the livers for hours after washing multiple times AND made the livers mushy...
okay this would be great for a pate, but that was not what i was looking for.

5 minutes worked well and while the rinsing was still fairly intense (5 times, soaking each time)
and then patting dry, i could live with this.

There was still a slight vinegar taste to the liver (i used chicken livers) and in the end i added sour cream to remove that, thus a cold dish.

so the reason for a milk soak is to remove some of the iron and add a creaminess to the liver...that is the lesson here and with that i give you my recipe for grilled chicken livers!

·      1 lb chicken livers, cleaned and rinsed
·      1 cup sour cream
·      1/2 onion, sliced thick
·      apple cider vinegar to cover the livers
·      1/2 teaspoon salt plus extra to taste
·      1 teaspoon black pepper
·      1/2 jalapeno pepper
·      1 tablespoon garlic chives
·      olive oil to coat livers

Soak the chicken livers in vinegar for 5 minutes
soak in water and drain 5 times
drain for 1 hour, rinse and pat dry
and olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, black pepper and onions
mix well
grill in a grill pan until done ~ 15 minutes, stirring regularly
place in a bowl, stir in sour cream, chives and pepper
salt to taste

serve cold