My taste buds did a double take this month, when I read the September 2013 edition of Food and Wine Magazine; a common occurrence for me when flipping through the deftly published pages. Truly, one of my favorite periodicals.
James Holmes, Chicken Fried-Chicken Livers just about jumped off the page. Like Pavlov’s dogs, I was in full tilt salivation mode, and couldn’t wait to try the recipe. James is the chef at Lucy’s Fried Chicken in Austin TX, where the fried dishes are down home, country-style, comfort foods. I know where I’m eating the next time I’m passing through Austin!
Creamy and pungent, coated with a crisp batter and served up piping hot; the taste of fried chicken livers take me back to moms kitchen and my childhood. Mom also made pan-fried calves liver with sautéed onions, a dish I grew to love.
Several years ago, grocery delis stocked fried chicken livers; perfect for me to nibble while I shopped for groceries. Sadly, fried chicken livers are a relic of the past, no longer being served at grocers delis, and rarely seen on the menu at local restaurants.
Pâté de foie gras is considered an ultimate culinary delight, the king of pâtés. Along with its pedigree comes a hefty price tag. Foie gras is French for “fat liver,” and this pâté is made from the livers of specially fattened geese or duck. There’s nothing better than a crisp loaf of french bread, a plate of Pâté , and a bottle of wine.
Some health benefits: The vitamin A found in liver is beneficial to you in a number of ways. It contributes to healthy fertility and proper embryo development. It also helps children to avoid developing asthma, prevents kidney stones, regulates blood sugar and fats. Additionally, the vitamin A found in liver can protect you from some environmental toxins and helps to promote proper development during puberty, according to SteadyHealth.com. The vitamin A and arachidonic acid in liver can improve the health and appearance of your hair and skin. Arachidonic acid also contributes to hydration, intestinal health and growth.
Read more: LiveStrong
With anticipation, I searched my local market to find, none! You would think that markets stocking tripe and cows tongue would also have a choice of chicken liver? Sadly, I only found cows liver. I finally found a few small containers, in the frozen meat department at Wholefoods market; freshly frozen, they were nicely cleaned and plump.
I have adapted the recipe, omitting the ground cumin from the seasoned flour mixture, substituting my fresh Sriracha Aioli instead of James adobo seasoned mayo; and pared the rich and creamy livers with my Spicy Cauliflower Pickles. The perfect trio of flavors!
After consuming about half a dozen, I was gastronomically satisfied and my family was nowhere to be found!
- 3 1/2 cups buttermilk
- 1/3 cup Louisiana-style hot sauce, such as Crystal
- 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 pound chicken livers, trimmed
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- Vegetable or peanut oil, for frying
- In a large bowl, whisk 2 cups of the buttermilk with the hot sauce and soy sauce. Add the trimmed chicken livers and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
- Make aioli sauce; refrigerate.
- Set a rack over a baking sheet. Spread 1 1/2 cups of the flour in a shallow bowl. In another shallow bowl, beat the eggs with the remaining 1 1/2 cups of buttermilk. In a third shallow bowl, mix the remaining 1 1/2 cups of flour, the cayenne, black pepper, and garlic salt.
- Remove the livers from the buttermilk, then dredge them in the plain flour. Dip the livers in the egg mixture, then dredge in the seasoned flour. Transfer to the rack.
- In a large saucepan, heat 2 inches of oil to 350°. Set another rack over a rimmed baking sheet. Add half of the livers to the hot oil and fry over moderately high heat, turning once, until barely pink inside, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer to the clean rack and season lightly with salt. Repeat with the remaining livers. Serve hot, with Spicy Sriracha Aioli
- Livers are tough little buggers to fry; they can, and will explode! I suggest using a fry daddy or a very deep saucepan to keep the mess to a minimum, and you safe from oil spatters.