AUTHOR: Julia TITLE: Happy Food (Recipe: Crispy Chicken Livers with BBQ Sauce) DATE: 10/18/2009 08:14:00 AM ----- BODY:

Maybe it’s a Jewish thing, but I love chicken livers (think: chopped liver on a bagel…mmmm!). Most Americans don’t like them, or any organ meat for that matter. I’ve always been confounded by this – where people draw the line that they’ll eat certain parts of the animal, but not others. It seems random to me. After all, the animal has been sacrificed, we should enjoy it all! But I digress….

I consider liver “happy” food. Yes, it’s weighted with fat and cholesterol, but it’s also jam-packed with iron, vitamin A and all the B-vitamins – those that boost energy and fight depression.

I don’t often see chicken livers at the market (or rather, I don’t see them more than one day before they expire). When I do, I snatch them up.

East Coast Grill pairs grilled chicken livers with “sweet and sour bacon greens” and a chipotle barbecue sauce. I decide to make a variation of this with the kale in my garden and a sweet potato from the market. The ketchup I made at the end of the summer morphed into barbecue sauce with the addition of a little chili paste.

Fried Chicken Livers with Garlic-Chili Greens and BBQ Sauce

½ cup ketchup, preferably homemade
1 tbs. lemon juice
1 chipotle chili minced (more or less to taste)
1 tbs. olive oil
4 cloves garlic, chopped
½ tsp. chili flakes (more or less to taste)
1 bunch Tuscan kale, finely sliced
½ tbs. red wine vinegar
½ pound chicken livers
2 tbs. flour
2 tbs. corn starch
3 tbs. plain oil
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Combine ketchup, lemon juice and chipotle. Set aside.
2. In a large skillet, heat olive oil. When hot, add garlic and cook until lightly golden. Add greens and chili flakes. Cook, stirring frequently, until greens are wilted and tender, about 3 minutes. Add vinegar. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
3. Drain chicken livers on a paper towel. Season with salt and pepper on all sides.
4. Combine flour and corn starch in a bowl. Add salt and pepper. Toss chicken livers in flour mixture to thoroughly coat.
5. Heat a large skillet over high heat. Add plain oil. Add livers and cook over high heat for 3 minutes. Turn over, and cook for three minutes more.

Serve chicken livers with wilted greens and barbecue sauce. To make it a complete meal, serve with sweet potato puree.

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----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Heather DATE:10/18/2009 08:18:00 PM i wish i liked livers. i love the idea of not letting any part of the animal go to waste - i just can't get into the texture... this looks lovely though! ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger adele DATE:10/19/2009 11:03:00 AM I love liver. I don't get the squeamishness about it, either. This sounds delicious! ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types DATE:10/19/2009 07:04:00 PM My grandmother would make chopped chicken livers, which were delicious. I haven't had it in years. ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Psychgrad DATE:10/21/2009 09:28:00 PM I don't know.....I'm just not a fan of chicken liver. Hang on...I like pate -- is that chicken liver? ----- COMMENT: AUTHOR:Blogger Julia DATE:10/23/2009 04:24:00 PM Heather -- I will give you that... it does have an odd texture... but I love that.

adele -- glad to have you on my side. :)

T.W. -- sounds like a fond memory.

Psychgrad -- Pate usually has some kind of liver (pork, duck, beef or chicken) in it... mixed in with plenty of fat. ----- --------