CHICKEN LIVER TAGLIATELLE
Choices are often influenced by budget and it is the economy cuts and bargains that naturally appeal to the person in charge of the household purse. Additionally, there is often an inverse relationship between expense and flavour. The more costly options at the butcher, fillet steaks and chicken breasts, are not nearly as flavoursome as their cheaper counterparts, beef rib and chicken thighs. This is certainly true of chicken livers, too: in the bargain basement of offal but in the penthouse for flavour. When I recently bought chicken livers at my local butcher on Seco Marina, incidentally, two things made me smile: the weight of the meat was (as is always the case) slightly more than I had asked for but for the same price, and the livers were wrapped in newspaper. Old school.
300g Flaky chicken sea salt livers
Freshly ground black pepper
400g dried tagliatelle
A scant ½ chicken stock cube
Extra virgin olive oil
A small handful of sage leaves
75g Parmesan, grated 1. Clean the chicken livers in cold running water, removing the blood clots and fatty membranes. Lay on kitchen paper and pat dry. 2. Roughly chop the livers and season with a few pinches of salt and a twist of black pepper. Set aside.
3. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and cook the tagliatelle according to the packet’s instructions. Reserve a cupful of the pasta cooking water and dissolve the crumbled stock cube into it. Drain the tagliatelle when it is just al dente. 4. Meanwhile, heat a good glug of olive oil with half the butter in a large, heavy-bottomed frying pan and, over a medium heat, sauté the livers and sage leaves until browned.
5. Add the drained tagliatelle to the frying pan and mix the livers and sage to incorporate with the strands of pasta. Turn the heat up a little higher and add the cup of reserved chicken stock/ pasta water. Stir well for 1min more, then remove from the heat.
6. Add the remaining butter and most of the grated Parmesan, turn over a few times in the pan to make sure the butter is melted, and serve on warmed plates. Sprinkle the remaining Parmesan as a final flourish at the table.