This Little Turkey..

Photo: Daniel Dent

I was off my feet for at least 2 weeks due to some foot issues and I can say that it has handsomely made me rate my time on the line and the look into the possibilities that await a cook.  This Little Turkey needs to slow down…

We spent the weekend out in Bodega Bay at a friends vacation rental and even though I wasn’t supposed to stand on my feet I just had to cook.  Sometimes I think that cooking is the only ability that I have to connect with another human being.  It really does consume my thoughts.  So as usual Holiday fare included a turkey; which was actually a roulade  of one butterflied breast rolled with a de-boned thigh, seasoned with Dijon mustard, rosemary, thyme, Apple Butter salt and pepper.   YUM.  The dinner wasn’t complete without the usual suspects of stuffing, and other sides from sweet potatoes, sautéed Lacinato Kale, roasted potatoes, and a stuffing.  The recipe for the the Kale was simply the same recipe from this post of Slow Cooked Greens w/ Apples and Bacon from Dec 2009.

Thanksgiving came up at just the right time.  The Autumn weather changes ever so slightly as we make our move into the winter, gloves seem to appear, parkas are strategically placed as if strewn messily on the couch, the smell of parsnips and turkey in the air, cloves and other Fall/Winter spices permeate the kitchen, the atmosphere around us changes as light goes into hibernation.  Colors of orange, browns, muted colors…the sights and sounds of each season are quite distinct, and of course this would not be a food blog without the mention of the flavors that enliven ones senses during this holiday season.

For me, it’s the taste of turkey,  gravy, sweet potatoes, foods that are rich, hearty or that have the ability to soothe and comfort someones Winter cravings.  OH AND SAGE!! How did I forget.  I just love Sage.  It is soft, smells so sweet and earthy and is such a subtle yet meaty herb.

Today I have two recipes that I would like to share with you.  One is a delicious Smashed Sweet Potato side dish and another is an overwhelmingly delicious Root Vegetable soup made with an exciting flavorful Turkey stock.

Sweet Potato Smash with Browned Butter Pecans and Sage.

4 Medium Sized Sweet Potatoes  or 8 Cups of Sweet potatoes.
1/4 C. Of Sage
1 C. Pecans
1/2 C. Butter
3/4 C. Buttermilk
3/4 C. Brown Sugar

Boil the Potatoes as you would regular potatoes for mashed potatoes.  Until they are fork tender.  Chiffonade your sage, but give it a bit of width (not too skinny). Roughly chop your Pecans.

When sweet potatoes are finished cooking, drain. In a separate pot or pan, turn heat to medium.  Add your butter and melt, then continue to add your sage and pecans till the smells bloom into the air.

Add your potatoes into a bowl and begin to mash w/ a potato masher (if tender enough even a fork will work it just takes a bit more effort).  Add heavy cream, 1/2 T Salt and Pepper, the Brown Sugar and the Pecan/butter/Sage mixture.  Incorporate all ingredients and set in a casserole. Be sure to not smooth out the top and just lightly make pockets for the next step.

Add about 1/2 C. of Heavy cream on the top allowing the cream to flow into the basins of mashed sweet potatoes.  Add a nice sprinkle of brown sugar.  Bake till top is golden.

Photo: Daniel Dent
For the Stock:
3 Fresh Bay Leaves
1 Onion
1 Carrot
Carcass of 1 Turkey.  (Here I used the uncooked  cavity f a 16 lb Turkey; including 2 wings, 1 neck and 1 bone from a de-boned thigh.)
Place ingredients into a stock pot. Cover with water.  Turn on to Boil.  Skim off what comes to the surface.  Turn off and set to a low simmer and cook for 3- 7 hours.
I like to cook my stock until the bones and completely collapsed and the gelatin in the joints become ultra soft and gooey. Doing so ensures that all the flavors within the meat and bones will be released.
After the allotted time allow stock to cool slightly and strain.  I like to use a bit of Cheesecloth as well as a strainer,  making sure that my stock is a clean liquid w/out the chunks.
For the Soup:
6 C. Stock
Photo: Daniel Dent
3/4 C. Celery Root
3/4. Parsnip
3/4 Carrots
1 C. Butternut Squash
1 C. Onion
1 Shallot
2 T. Chives
2 T. Sage
Olive Oil
Cut all root vegetables into 1/2 inch dices.  Except for the carrot,  I like to roll cut my carrots into similar sized cuts. Roll Cutting means that as you cut your carrot you are “rolling” it about a 1/4 of the way around then cutting to ever so slightly to obtain each rustic cut. When this is done.
Add Olive Oil  a pan that has been heated to medium and begin to sweat onions.
Add all the root vegetables and toss till onions are thoroughly tossed through.  Add Stock (cover to about 1-2 inches of stock) and continue to cook from medium heat to simmer. 40 Minutes.  At the last-minute season with the Salt and pepper,  Add the Chives and Sage.  Serve.  Enjoy.

You can use also purée this soup to make it into a smooth soup, but I like my soups chunky but still really rich with the stock.  If you do purée just remember to add the herbs after you have your desired smoothness or consistency.

AND IF YOU ARE STILL Reading and wondering what happened to the rest of the turkey we roasted and made the other breast into roasted turkey for sandwiches.  Which I highly seasoned with Old Bay Seasoning, and Fresh Rosemary and loads of Cracked Black Pepper.

AND IF YOU ARE STILL reading this…please feel free to pass this blog along to your friends and family.  I would really love to get more responses as well as to know who my readers are.  Thank you ♥


Beans…they are very versatile…a really great side, or thickening agent.  I really started to like them more and more since I started to fresh shuck these pods.  That fresh they are not as delicate as I thought.  And from dried, they reconstitute beautifully.

At home I find different uses for them.  I like them mashed and made into a spread for vegetables or toasted baguette slices.  I like them in soups as an added protein or sometimes as a thickener.  Beans…also great simply as a side item to your dinner, lunch whatever you choose.

In Vietnamese cuisine we use a lot of beans in our desserts, I do not remember much use for them in savory items, well I take that back because we had mung beans in certain savory cakes as well as the infamous crispy Vietnamese crêpe.  My mother filled this turmeric yellow crêpe with minced pork, shrimp, bean sprouts mung beans and sweated onions and scallions.  When it came right out of the pan it was like magic, the sides were golden and crispy, the  fresh vegetable and herb accoutrements were bright and abundant.  And, of course I can’t forget about her homemade fish sauce, and really…her’s IS the best.

I eagerly awaited for that moment when the crisped omelette looking item fell onto my plate.  Still steaming with glistened edges I usually ate that part first before I dug into the filled center.

Beans…needless to say I like them. When I was growing up in Chino California my El Salvadorian neighbors fed me refried beans when I would often get locked out of my house (I would always forget my keys), and as I got deeper into food and cooking I learned of their vast uses.  Now, the bean the legume and sometimes the pod that they come in have become staples in my cooking ritual.

This recipe comes from one day staring at what was in front of me…A glass jar of cannelini beans and a small bunch of still dew soaked watercress. I find that this “sauce” that I made goes very very well with poultry, fish and even pork.  I say “sauce” with much reserve because it is actually served cold like a relish.  Although I used this as a sauce for my meats, it is also really incredible as a thickening agent in soups, also as a base for a soup especially for those vegetarians that need a nice soup base without the need of chicken stock or even vegetable stock.

Daniel Dent

Bean and Watercress Puree

1 Can Cannelini Beans
1 C. Watercress
8 Mint Leaves
1 Medium size Clove of Garlic (I used about 2)
8-9 Leaves of Italian Parsley
1 Green Onion
1/4 of a Small Yellow Onion
1/2 Lemon
1/2 C. Olive Oil
Salt to Taste


If you have a hand blender ( I used my Cuisinart Kitchen Wand) Pulse… add in more lemon juice and or H20 or  Olive oil til you have reached a your desired consistency.

This is for you babe:


This puree is actually really delicious as a base for a vinaigrette.  Dilute it with some kind of white wine vinegar (I suggest a white balsamic)…what the heck…heres a recipe.

(added on Oct. 28. 2010)

Watercress and Cannelini Bean Vin.

1/4 C. of the Puree
1 T. White Balsamic Vin.
1 T Lemon Juice
Pinch of Salt.
1/2 C. Olive Oil.  *If you can use a really bright fresh pressed Olive Oil.
*This is really great over a multitude of greens!

Dinner for Two.

There is something so thrilling  about coming up with a recipe on the spot…I love it. My finger snaps, I close my eyes, and I start to quietly mouth out flavors that I think would pair well together.

Cookbooks are wonderful to have around the house.  I adore the old ones, the new ones, the encyclopedias of knowledge, and Dictionaries of scientific facts, the wordly flavors, and the combustion of ingredients.  They are my addiction.  But our home is small.  Filled with wonderful recipes, they become my references to inspiration.  I use as my sources for my ideas with recipes from blogs, to cookbooks to the many magazines that are out there. The other day I came across an article for Duck L’Orange, a classic French recipe in one of my magazines …I lost the article (where are you? ) but could not waste any time, as my car rental was expiring.  So I opted to make my own rendition of Duck L’orange.

I made this in a small cast iron skillet for my client (that I personal chef for)  and decided that this recipe, if doubled would be a great and luscious dinner for 2.  When I cook for Vipul, I have to decide that it is that I am going to cook for him that day…meals for 4 days made in one day. At first I was in a state of panic thinking about it…then well now, I realize just how fun and exciting it is to cook for him each week.  I will go back and list the recipe, but so that you can know what I go through every Monday starting at 10:00 ending at 8:00 Start to finish.  That includes having coffee and creating a list, creating a menu, renting a car, sourcing the meats, produce, prep, cooking, packaging, and plating.  Oh yeah CLEANING.

Here is this week’s Dinner Menu:


Dinner #1:
Salad: Ripe Cantelope, Treviso and Golden Heirloom Tomato Salad with Mint, Chives, and Red Wine Vin.
Entree: Thai Style Seafood Stew w/Cod, Prawns,and Scallops in a Lightly Spiced Broth w/Turnips, Tree Oyster Mushrooms & Baby Broccoli over Buttanese Rice.
Lunch: Slow Roasted Lamb Sandwhich with Calvestrano Olive Puree Treviso and Rapini Leaves

Dinner #2: Harissa & Mace Rubbed Poussin Stuffed with Cous Cous Flavored with Salt cured Black Olives Apricots reconstituted in White wine Pickled Garlic and Dill Flavored with Cinnamon alongside/ Roasted Sweet Peppers.

Dinner #3: Sage and Pepper Rubbed Chateaubriand alongside Paprika Smashed Potatoes and Slow Braised Rainbow Chard w/Fuji Apples scented with ginger and garlic.

Dinner #4: Duck Leg Braised w/ White Wine, Cream and Orange Juice w/Slow Roasted Garlic Cloves, Carrots Turnip Greens and Pearl Onions

But, will you…?

Photo: Daniel Dent

Dear reader,

If I do not write for more than a month will you still continue to come back….If I don’t write for two will I be forgotten?  What about 3?

It’s time for a change once again, and I feel it in my bones…something else is knocking at my door.  Will I open it.

Forget about that cryptic and personal message and lets focus on a new recipe.  Sheep’s milk Pecorino and Black Pepper Dumplings in a Chicken and Porcini Broth w/Mushrooms and Vegetables.  Alas, we are hitting a cold winter here in San Francisco and the other night amidst the rolling fog and mist came a new and very comforting soup.  I have to say that it held well for at least 4 days in the refrigerator, and all that I really had to do was add a bit more broth or water during the reheat, because the dumplings naturally thickened the soup.   The steaming bowl of soup called upon images of someone cozying up in a wool blanket next to a fireplace as he or she held the hot cup of soup in their hands for warmth.   Yum…and I would like to share this with you.

The soup is a homey concoction of sweet vegetables and rich cheeses…specked with a surprising spice from the soft broken black peppercorns.

Sheep’s Milk Pecorino and Black Pepper Dumplings in an Aromatic Chicken and Porcini Broth with Mushrooms and Vegetables.

For the Broth:

1 Whole Chicken
1 Gallon of Water
1 Bay Leaf
1 Yellow Onion Cut in 1/2
1 Carrot Cut in Rough Chunks
3 Stalks Celery Cut into Rough Chunks
1 C. Dried Porcinis
1 T. Black Peppercorns

Add the chicken and cover with water.   All the rest of the ingredients except Salt and Porcinis.  Bring to a Boil then simmer for at least 3-4 hours.  At 1.5 hours take out your chicken and remove the meat ( I prefer dark meat and only used the leg and thigh and partial breast meat).  Add your chicken back into the pot  as well as your porcinis and continue to cook for another 1.5 hours. While it is simmering skim off the muck that surfaces to the top.  Drain and continue to cook the rest of the meal…

Cool the reserved chicken meat.   Chop or pull apart the chicken meat to be added later into the soup.

For the Dumplings:

2 Cups All Purpose Flour
1 1/2 C. Grated Sheep’s Milk Pecorino
1 Egg beaten
1 C. Milk
1/2 C. Heavy Cream.
4. T Melted Butter
2 t. Baking Soda
1/2 T. Salt
2 T Course Ground Black Pepper

Add 1 egg to a medium-sized mixing bowl and beat.  Add your Milk, Heavy Cream and Butter.  In a separate bowl combine the following Dry ingredients: Flour, Baking Soda, Salt.  Combine the dry and wet ingredients incorporating until there are loose lumps.  Now add your Pecorino and Pepper.  Mix till no lumps appear.  Let sit for 15 minutes…

For the Soup:

1 C. Fresh Shucked Corn
1 C. Peas
1 Large Carrot (Shaved using a vegetable peeler)
1 1/2 C. Sliced Mushrooms ( I used a combination of: Shitake and Creminis)
1 C. Diced Onions
1 Sprig Rosemary
1 C. Heavy Cream.
1 T. Kosher Salt
1/4 C. Olive Oil .

In a lovely soup pot ( I love love the La Creuset enameled cast iron oven)  add the strained broth and salt, bring to a simmer.   In a separate sauté pan lightly sauté the following on medium to medium high heat: Onions, carrots, rosemary and Mushrooms and cream.

So because the dumplings will expand and are very fragile I recommend that you do not bring your pot to a boil when adding the dumplings.  Using a small spoon or Demitasse spoon,  form quenelles and softly drop into the simmering water.  Being careful to not add too many at once.  Cook covered for 15 minutes.  At this point they will be firm enough for you to add the rest of the ingredients.  Using a large soup spoon or object of your choice, hold the dumplings to one side and add the sautéed ingredients as well as the corn, peas and reserved chicken meat.  Continue to cook uncovered  on low simmering heat for another 20-30 minutes.

We enjoyed our dinner with a nice slide of toasted Tartine Walnut Loaf.  ENJOY.

Passin’ me by…

I’ve noticed that I have written about meat dishes feverishly…and it’s about time that I change things up. Cooking for Vipul is still a very unique experience and I have been able to experiment with MANY meat dishes…but I have also excluded the vegetable dishes that come alongside these meat hearty recipes. Because a meal without balance is not really a full meal.

I just can’t let these dishes pass me by…let me continue this post with a few recipes for vegetable side dishes…simple and plentiful…easy and damn delicious.

I really like the individual recipes for incorporating the merging of the many ingredients of my culture as well as my youth growing up in Southern California. Now with what I have learned as a line cook I can now use everything to my personal at home advantage and for my personal chef duties.

The flavors are Italian, Coastal, Vietnamese, Caribbean, as well as Indian.  I write with great anticipation for each recipe hoping to excite new and old readers.

It’s not a fancy fusion…it’s just instinctual.

This if for the very talented Valerie Shagday♥.

Heirloom Tomato Salad with Fried Plantains Avocados and Shallots.

Photo: Daniel Dent
1 large or 2 med Heirloom Tomatoes
1 Ripe Avocado
1 green plantain
1 Small Shallot
1/4 C.
1 tsp. Lime Juice
Olive Oil

Remove skin from the green plantain. Cut your plantains to 1/2 inch thick .  Boil until a knife can pierce through the
plantain and slide out easily.
Take out of water and cool.  Using a piece of parchment paper place over individual pieces of plantain.  Using either the s
ide of your knife or another flat object press firmly over the plantain to flatten to half its size.  Heat oil in a non stick pan and lightly fry till crisp on both sides.  Season lightly and drain on a towel.
Slice your shallots and macerate them in some red wine vinegar.
Cut your heirlooms whichever way you like; either in wedges or 1/4 inch rounds.   Halve your avocado and remove the pit,  using a large spoon begin to scoop out your avocado and slice into wedges.
Arrange accordingly:   Tomatoes, plantains, avocado slices alternating between and slightly overlapping.  Lightly salt and pepper your vegetables,  Squeeze some lime juice over the limes and the plantains,  a drop of red wine vinegar over the tomatoes, lightly squeeze the excess vinegar from your shallots and drop randomly over the salad and finish with a drizzle of Olive Oil and a nice sprinkling of parsley.

Jicama, Fennel and Golden Beet Root Salad with Lime Boccorones and Mint.

1 C. Jicama
1 C. Fennel
1 small. Golden Beet
1/4 C. Lime
6 White Anchovy Filets
1/4 C.  Mint
1/4 C. Olive Oil
1/4 C. White Balsamic Vin.

Peel:  Jicama, and Beet.  Using a mandolin slice shavings of your Jicama and fennel 1/8″ thick.  Slice your beet root a bit thinner.
Begin to slice your Jicama and fennel into match stick size cuts and set aside.  Macerate your beet slices in the White Balsamic Vin.
In a bowl toss your Jicama, Fennel and Lime juice w/ a few drops of the White Balsamic, salt and pepper and set aside.
Arrange:  Alternating between small grabs of the Jicama and Fennel salad, slightly overlapping so that you can still see the golden beet.  Lay your White Anchovies over the salad.  Add an extra squeeze of Lime juice, and drizzle of Olive Oil.  End with a generous sprinkling of chopped mint.

Curry Spiced Potatoes and Peas.

Since peas are not always handy year round frozen peas are always accepted.  Here I used a medley of red and yellow potatoes.

2 T. Curry Powder
1/2 lb. Boiled Potatoes
1 C. Peas
4 Cloves. Garlic
1 Jalapeno
1 C. Yellow Onion
2 T. Ginger
1/4 C. Cilantro
Olive Oil
Boil your potatoes in salted water until they become fork tender.  Take them off heat and cool. Reserve the water.
In the meantime grate your ginger, and rough chop your jalapeno.  In a mortar firmly pound your garlic and add your ginger jalapeno and some salt as the abrasive.
Dice your onion into small dices.  Roughly dice your potatoes.
Heat a skillet on high.  Add Olive Oil. Add your combination garlic, jalapeno and ginger mixture.  Turn heat to medium. Release these aromas into the pan and add your Curry powder.  Incorporate that into the pan then add your onions. Stir for about 5-6 minutes til onions are soft and translucent.
ADD your potatoes and Peas.  Continue to cook and scrape bottom of the pan.  If pan is getting too dry add about 1 C. of your reserved potato water.
At the last-minute add chopped cilantro and Olive Oil.


Black Eyed Pea Salad with Garlic, Ginger and Olive Oil.

This one is probably the easiest out of the bunch and takes up zero stove space!
1 Can Black Eyed Peas (Drained)
1 tsp. Garlic
1 tsp.Ginger
3 T. Lemon Juice
1/4 C. Parsley
1/4 C. Olive Oil

Finely mince your garlic to almost a paste.  Finely grate ginger.  Roughly chop parsley.
Drain a can of Black eyed peas, and place into a bowl.
Add garlic, ginger, lemon juice, salt and pepper.  Fold in parsley and the olive oil.

Sea of Love Lost and Found

So after the post about stuffed cabbage, I would now like to introduce to you Stuffed Calamari. There is probably going to be a few repeat post about stuffed food items and this will be the second installment. This is a boastful post about a wonderfully exciting dish.

I love this recipe! It was lost a few weeks ago but so glad it resurrected and was found within my memory Rolodex.

My mother used this recipe for her eggroll filling; clear vermicelli noodles, black fungus, minced shrimp, pork, and onions. I have been inspired again by her, but have revised this recipe’s filling; pork, minced shrimp, onions, mint, ginger and Preserved lemons among some other ingredients.

I really adore Fregola Sarda. It’s a Sardinian pasta that is toasted and shaped like tiny marbles and it’s miraculously tasty. If you can’t find this pasta around you can also use barley, farro or orzo…but the texture of these nibbles are pretty awesome.

Stuffed Preserved Lemon Calamari of Shrimp and Pork over a bed of Fregola Sarda in a Spicy Tomato Sauce.

Oh another thing…you must absolutely consider that this protein will shrink drastically while cooking! Mine were about 5 inches and shrunk to 2 inches when cooked! So please fill them only halfway.

8 Whole Calamari or Squid
1/4 lb Ground Pork
5 large Shrimp or 6-7 medium-small
1/4 C. Minced Yellow Onion
2 T Minced Preserved Lemon
1 T. Chopped Mint
1/2 T. Grated Ginger
1/2 T. Salt
1 t. Pepper
1 C. Fregola Sarda

For the Sauce :
1/2 C. Diced Yellow Onion
1 T. Minced Garlic
1/2 T. Fresh Marjoram
1/2 T. Fresh Thyme
2 C. Chopped canned Tomatoes
1/2 T. Dried Red Chilli Flakes
1/2 T. Grated Ginger
1. Clean your Calamari by removing the head and the outer layer. To do this imagine peeling off a very thin glove. Also remove the hard backbone within the body. Set aside. When that is done begin to bring a pot of salted water to boil. When that comes to a boil add the fregola In the meantime…
2. Set your pork in a medium size mixing bowl. Remove your shrimp from their shells, remove the vein – now you can do this part two ways:
1. Using a heavy object like the back of a sauté pan you can pound your shrimp to a paste-like consistency or
2. Using a sharp knife just hand mince your shrimp.
Mince 1/2 a yellow onion, Dice the other half and reserve for the sauce. Mince your preserved Lemon reserve 1 1/2 T. for the sauce. Mince herbs set aside.
Combine the meat, onions, ginger, garlic, salt, pepper and preserved lemons into a bowl, and using your hands mix thoroughly.
3. For the Sauce: Sweat your garlic and onions with a bit of olive oil on medium heat. Do not brown. Add the next 2 ingredients let bloom (which means let the aromas seep out) add your tomatoes and simmer for 10 minutes on medium to low heat. Add a bit of water if has thickened too much. Add the rest of your ingredients: red pepper flakes, ginger.   If it helps use a grater or microplane for your ginger. Simmer lightly for another 5 minutes or so…
4. Place your stuffed calamari in a shallow baking dish, pour your cooked and drained fregola over, and then pour the sauce. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes. By this time you can see them shrink to about half their size!
Plate and enjoy as a lovely meal or as a small plate
One of my new favorites to wake up to…

It’s a Gamble…Ramble…

Lord knows that most the time I rarely use a recipe, and if I end up using one I never follow everything to a T.   I am often inspired to make something sporadically but rarely do I ever know how to recreate it.  So as soon as I figured this recipe out I knew I just had to write it down.  This recipe was created for my client.  This same recipe will also be used for a baby shower for which I will be catering later next month.

I adapted this recipe from and it was one of Richard Olney’s recipes for a poultry liver terrine, from Simple French Cooking.  I assumed that pâté should have a certain consistency.  I was worried about not having a proper machine to make a smooth pâté but surely enough the idea of a very earthy and herbaceous chicken liver spread delighted my senses.  The instructions called for hand minced liver, and a bit of weight was lifted from my worries.

Everything and the kitchen sink in this one.  I opted for more butter, the addition of creme fraiche  and a bit more herbs.  So, forgive me if this isn’t the normal protocol for creating a liver spread.   It was a bit of a gamble to create something like this and not really knowing how it would turn out.  But to my surprise I had the upper hand on this one.

This spread is enriched through bacon fat, the creme fraiche, and butter which becomes extra decadent when it solidifies.  But it doesn’t taste heavy or overly rich at all.  So with my handy scissors I went out to the garden and cut up a few sprigs of sage, rosemary, thyme, and marjoram.

If you do not have Creme Fraiche handy I am sure you could work with sour cream. Bacon fat is also optional.  However, I would have really liked to have used Duck Fat.  It would have lent a bit of a cleaner taste and would have been really pretty to have a nice set layer atop the spread.

Rustic Chicken Liver Spread w/ Garden Herbs 
1 1/2  lb Chicken Livers
1/2 C.  Creme Fraiche ( I used Cow Girl Creamery)
1/2 C.   Softened butter
1/2 T.  Fresh Rosemary
1/2 T.  Fresh Marjoram
1/2 T.  Fresh Thyme
1/2 T.  Fresh Sage
1     Medium Yellow Onion
2  Cloves Garlic s
3 T.  Bacon Fat or Duck Fat or Goose Fat
2     Medium Eggs
1/2 C.  Milk.
1 1/2 C. White Bread Crumbs
1 T. Freshly cracked black pepper
1/8 C. White Wine

Things to Prepare and Set Aside…
  • Have your butter at room temp.
  • Finely dice your onions, almost a mince.
  • Make very skinny slivers of your garlic.
  • Clean your livers of any discolorations or sinewy pieces. Chop your livers for a small (not fine) consistency.
  • Take pull apart the fragrant leaves from the stems of the herbs and fine chop.
  • Lightly toast your bread, remove the crust and place in a plastic bag.  Crush with heavy object to make the crumbs.

Turn on your skillet to high let skillet come to temp, and add a bit of olive oil.  Add your onions and garlic let cook till softened.  Add your livers and cook till there is no longer any visible pink.  Add your wine and scrape bottom of pan, now add all your herbs.  Season livers with salt to taste.

In bowl combine your breadcrumbs, milk, eggs, and creme fraiche.  Season with salt about 1/2 a tablespoon.

Take your livers off heat and your fresh cracked pepper.  Let cook to room temp.  Add your softened butter.  Combine bread crumb/egg mixture.  Place in your desired dish. Let cool, and let it set in your refrigerator overnight.  However there is one other important step

Note: I like to use a potato masher or a large fork to further mash the livers after they get off the heat in order to get a much smoother paste-like consistency.

This is why I love cooking.  It’s the ability to make something ordinary like chicken livers into something completely heavenly and scrumptious.  I also love the ability to invent, re-invent, and experiment with the mammoth supply of food items around us.   It can sometimes be a gamble, but at least this time the end result gave me a winning hand.