Calf’s liver has a light flavour compared to other offal. When cooked correctly, it melts in the mouth. For maximum flavour it is important to sear liver over a high heat and keep the centre just pink. Overcooked liver turns grainy, tough and grey. Do not be tempted to wash liver as this makes it discolour on cooking. It’s very good served with buttery mash or creamy polenta. This recipe is an old favourite of mine and it is still on my menu today.
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
40 g (1 ½ oz) butter
450 g (1 lb) red onions, thinly sliced
450 g (1 lb) calf’s liver, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons plain flour
6 sage leaves
4 tablespoons Marsala wine
2 tablespoons red wine
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oil and half the butter in a large frying pan. Add the onions and cook over a low heat for 15 minutes, until they become very soft and translucent.
Meanwhile, pat the liver dry on kitchen paper and then cut it into strips 1 cm( ½ in) wide. Put the flour on a large plate and season with salt and pepper. Coat the liver in the seasoned flour.
Remove the onions from the pan with a slotted spoon and keep warm. Raise the heat and add the liver and sage leaves to the pan. Cook over a high heat for 2 minutes, until browned.
Add the Marsala and red wine to the pan and cook for 2 minutes, until slightly reduced.
Return the onions to the pan then stir in the remaining butter and the parsley. Cook for 2 minutes and serve immediately.