If you’ve ever lived with me, you’ll know that I have a penchant for suddenly making “curries” out of pretty much whatever is in the fridge. Kipper and swede curry, surprisingly good; curried bechamel parsnip lasagna, quite the disgusting disaster. Tonight however, with some defrosted chicken livers winking at me, I’m game for a new curry.
Chicken livers are fast to cook and well delicious. I first had them a few years ago fried with balsamic vinegar and wilted spinach salad, or something along those lines, balsamic was definitely involved. However, even though I know I like them, I really don’t ever cook with them. Time to rectify this!
At the start of January (the same day I bought my kidneys) I bought a packet of Sainsburys chicken livers in a fit of enthusiasm. I then realised I didn’t have time to eat them, so froze them. With the old offal, especially the organs you can only freeze things for a month, so the other night I combined unorthodox currying with my defrosted livers.
A while ago I made a tamarind stew which was super delicious (it may or may not have involved oxtail) and I thought the tamarind’s sour notes would be a good foil for the chicken liver richness. There is also an amazing chicken liver curry that you can get from Shabab’s that is spicy and delicious. With chicken livers, you can, I believe cook them until they’re slightly pink, but because these ones had been frozen I gave them a good cooking. This didn’t mean they were tough though. It’s all to do with cooking times. Like so much of cooking.
What I wanted was to get loads of flavour going in those livers, so I marinated them for half an hour or so, basically while I cooked the vegetable part of the curry.
I have a rice cooker, so before I did any of the following I put the rice cooker on with some brown rice in!
What you need is:
1 packet chicken livers;
1 onion chopped; 1 medium sweet potato roughly chopped; squirt garlic puree; 1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 tsp tamarind paste; 1/2 tsp ground ginger; 1 teaspoon madras curry powder; 1 tsp chillies chopped in oil; 1 tsp cumin seeds.
First of all mix together all the spices. It will go to a dark loose paste. A teacup and a teaspoon are good tools.
Secondly, take half of the mixture and put in a bowl with the chicken livers. Mix this well. It is now marinading.
Thirdly, start to fry the onion, then add garlic, then the sweet potato. Cook this for a few minutes on a medium heat, then add the other half of the spice mix. Keep stirring. Add the tinned tomatoes. Keep it moving. The chicken livers take very little time to cook, so you want the sweet potato to be cooked through. This seemed to take about twenty minutes.I added the blood from the liver carton to the sauce too.
Fourthly, put the curried veg mix to one side in a bowl, and using the same pan add some oil and fry the chicken livers, along with their accompanying marinade. They need a couple of minutes each side on a higher heat than the vegetables did.
Don’t worry if they start to look a bit breadcrumby because the liver is full of blood and bits come off and make it all look a bit scruffy. You can see that below. Don’t worry.
I cooked them so there was still a tiny bit of pink in the middle, mostly because I knew there would be residual heat that cooked them further whilst I plated up rice, made drinks and faffed around. Also, you want to avoid cooking-the-shit-out-of-it-itis. By the time you eat it, the pink is pretty much gone.
Fifthly, add the vegetables back into the pan and combine them and the livers together. The crumby bits of liver will now combine in the sauce.
Get a plate, put some carbs on it, then add your curry. DELICIOUS!