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Rustic Chopped Liver


Why rustic? Because it is chopped, not mashed, whipped, food processed, or otherwise adulterated. It is simply chopped using a sturdy wooden spatula. It is also pretty basic with herbs and spices like parsley and paprika shining through. My favorite part is the addition of butter.... mmmm butter. Traditionally chopped chicken liver is made with schmaltz (chicken fat) and I will use this when I have it on hand, but I personally still add butter in addition to schmaltz because pastured butter is just so incredible.  I believe that chopped liver is also usually eaten cold, but we like it warm, probably because I could never start it early enough in the day to have it cold by dinner time and also because the smell of it cooking brings the family into the kitchen eager to eat. This recipe makes enough for us to enjoy a dinner of warm chopped liver and a lunch of cold chopped liver on salad the next day.

This is my tried and true liver recipe in our house. Everyone eats it, including me.  In all truth liver started out as one of the few things I just didn't eat well. In the early years of our marriage my husband would bring home liver as a treat for himself. He'd cook it up and I would attempt to eat it, I wanted to eat it, but after the first 1 or 2 bites I just couldn't do it. Regardless I would always try it. Then while I was expecting our first child suddenly I craved liver. CRAVED it. So I started playing around with various recipes, I had a lot of fails, but chopped liver turned out to be edible. I learned a few techniques (like soaking liver), I played with flavors, I topped it with sour cream (doesn't sour cream make everything better?) and now it is one of our favorite meals. I am not claiming that it will work miracles and turn non-liver eating folks into diehard liver fanatics (yes I am pretty much a liver fanatic now), but if you happen to want to try liver (because it is awesome for you) you can always start here and see where it takes you.


Rustic Chopped Liver

1 pound pastured chicken livers (trimmed if needed)

2-3 cups milk (I use raw milk that has slightly soured)

1 tbsp Schmaltz (more as needed/desired)

2 tbsp Pastured Butter

1 small onion finely chopped (divide finely chopped onion evenly)

3 boiled eggs, peeled and chopped

1/4 cup green onions (about 3 green onions)

1/4 cup parsley, chopped (plus some extra for garnish)

2 tsp paprika

1 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper


Equipment: 12" cast iron skillet, sturdy wooden spatula, glass mixing bowl


Directions: If your liver is frozen remove it from the freezer the night before you plan on making it. In the morning put the liver and milk in a bowl with a cover and return it to the fridge for 8+ hours (this provides the best results, but I have forgotten to submerge my liver until after lunch time leaving only 3-4 hours to soak with good results). Boil your eggs with your preferred method (my method is in a little salted boiling water for 6 minutes), cool and peel them, set aside. Finely chop your onion, minced may be an even better term. Divide the chopped onion, saving half to add later. Heat your schmaltz in the large cast iron skillet over medium high heat, add half of the onions and cook until soft and slightly golden. Add your liver to the skillet. Do not overcook! It is okay if there is still a little pink inside. Once just cooked transfer the liver and onion to the mixing bowl. Use the wooden spatula to chop the warm livers. Add the remaining raw onion, green onion and butter and continue to chop/mix the ingredients together. The warm livers will melt the butter and mellow the onions. Chop the eggs and parsley. Add eggs, parsley and seasoning to the liver mixture folding the additions in. Serve warm garnished with parsley and sour cream or cool and enjoy with crisp butter head lettuce leaves.


Nutrition Facts: Serving Size    1/2 cup,   Total Servings   8,   Calories    149,   Carbohydrate   3g,   Fiber   1g,   Sugar   1g,   Fat   9g,   Protein   12g (calculations from myfitnesspal.com using the brands in my kitchen, information may vary) Nutrition information does not include sour cream.


Tip: Can't find schmaltz and don't want to make your own, bacon grease is a really good replacement, I wouldn't use just butter because it would brown and possibly burn at the medium high heat.

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