Classic CHICKEN LIVERS / 19th Century French Restaurant Recipe


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  1. When cleaning the livers, be sure to remove any hint of blue or green completely. That's the gall bladder, and it has the most bitter flavor you'll ever have. One drop of its bile can ruin a whole pint of livers.

  2. pro (aka home cook) tip: brown some onions in the fat before inserting livers, add some black pepper as seasoning.
    Next day you'll have the best fat spread on your bread for breakfast or hangover. (you have to salt separately)

  3. Using the main ingredient of this recipe as an example, what are the general differences imparted to the final flavour and presentation between ingredients that are sautéed and those that are stirred with fats in high Western cuisine?


    250g (8.8 oz) Chicken Livers
    Ice Water
    30ml (1 oz) Cognac
    Fresh Ground Black Pepper
    15g (0.5 oz) Duck Fat
    or bacon fat, or olive oil as a last resort

    My early experiences with chicken liver were Rumaki – a favorite of Tiki restaurants in which chicken liver was wrapped in bacon, but it was more like a strategy to disguise the unpleasant taste of the liver. It wasn't until Albert, the Saucier in my first French restaurant (see page 57 of my book "40 Years in One Night") that I discovered just how delicious chicken liver could actually be. We would receive

    Thanks for watching !

    Divide the weight of the liver by 10 for the amount of cognac, and then add just a bit more. Thus, 250g / 10 = 25ml + a bit = 30ml (1 oz) cognac.

    300°F = 150°C MINIMUM

    It is also important to get the freshest livers you can for the optimum taste. Liver deteriorates very quickly because it is filled with very active enzymes that will digest anything, including the liver itself, and the digestion waste products don't taste very nice. The fresher, the better!

    A cast iron pan is at least as good, if not BETTER. I used this one because the white surface provides better contrast for the video.

    In a restaurant they would be fried very quickly in a SCORCHING hot pan just to brown the outer surface before plating up.
    What you have at this point are STABILIZED chicken livers – the enzymes have been rendered inactive so they can be store in a refrigerator safely for up to two days and finished off at a moment's notice.



    IMPORTANT: I am not cooking these quite enough to be eaten directly – these are for use as a component in another recipe coming soon. If you are going to eat them directly, then cook them a bit darker.

    CLICK HERE for more information about this book and how to get it.

    whole chickens from delivery that still had the livers, hearts and gizzards. Since the livers were not needed for anything on the menu, the cooks were free to use them as staff food. When fresh and properly prepared, they're completely different from what you've probably ever tasted. This is the classic method from 19th Century France, but nearly forgotten these days.

  5. Really appreciate your chicken liver recipe. Many videos on YouTube have tons of salt or spices that changes the subject so much that it's not really chicken liver to me anymore. All the best from the tiny islands of Palau!

  6. Chicken livers are delicious. I usually cook them with mushrooms, tomato and white wine and a bit of oregano. I also like them with potatoes or capsicum like a casserole.
    However, you can serve them with mashed potatoes, or steamed rice or pasta. Very tasty economical dish. And very healthy. Lots of iron in liver.

  7. Tried it and the livers turned out better than any I have ever cooked, granted that my cooking is usually pretty bad, but still, nice simple recipe. Good stuff ,thanks for the video!

  8. You had me by having a chicken liver recipe, got me thrilled by adding Cognac, and then made my day by using Duck Fat. There is 1.5 lb Duck Fat in my fridge. My mother always did a dual-cook of chicken livers. I cook with Duck Fat because I can share things I cook with my cat.

  9. When I eat chicken liver it's so bitter. I feel like I'm gonna barf at any second. The type of chicken liver that I eat is that they put it in the stew and that's it, is that a proper way?. Is cooking it like this will create a different taste of how I used to eat? .

  10. Would this be a good method to prepare liver for pate? I really love Jewish style chopped liver, but every time I make it, it has that slightly bitter taste that isn't so great.

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