Monthly Archives: November 2014

I Gotta Cook This Liver

I love liver. A nice pan fried slice of calf’s liver is spectacular. High in iron, great protein. I feel good.

So what do I do with a sheep’s liver and a small amount of beef liver? MAKE PATE. A ton of it apparently.

6 containers of beef and lamb’s liver pate (and a possible burned out blender). The glass jars are 8oz each. EACH. Topped with clarified browned butter. See, the butter was supposed to just be clarified but someone left the fire on too long and….well, it smelled great.


  • A lamb’s liver. I have no idea how much. It looked to be the full liver. Got it from the farmer’s market
  • An order of beef liver that I got delivered from Greenling. It was a bit on the puny side.
  • 1 shallot
  • minced garlic
  • onion powder
  • powdered ginger
  • smoked sea salt
  • cream
  • Unsalted butter (KerryGold)
  • Bourbon
  • Port

Thaw and cut the liver into manageable chunks like an inch or less. Sautee your shallots in butter. Throw in your liver chunks. Realize that you aren’t really sauteeing anything because you overcrowded your pan. Add the garlic because it came from a jar. Cook the liver. Add some salt and the onion powder and other dried spices. Pour some bourbon because you saw it in a recipe. Pour in some port because you thought that was a good idea too (maybe a 1/4 cup of each. It’ll cook off). Cook until done.

Fish out your chunks to let cool a bit. Cook down the liquid because now it smells awesome. In a blender because you don’t have room for a food processor, add some of your liver chunks, some room temp butter (2 tbs), and some cream. You will note that I am using horribly inaccurate measurements. I would like this to be kinda chunky, not a mousse and I’m working in small batches.

Pulse the blender. Realize it’s not pulsing. Add more cream. Turn blender higher, watch as it eventually blends your precious work. Add more chunks. Watch as it stops blending and a horrible smell emanates. Realize the blender is smoking. Dump out partially blended liver into a bowl.

Start over with next set of liver, vowing to do better.

Repeat. Making sure to add all the golden liquid goodness you cooked down earlier.

Eventually have mostly processed liver pate that you can’t stop sneaking tastes of (you ARE tasting as you go, right?)

Scramble to find jars to hold this stuff.

Clarify a little, some, all the rest of the butter.

Pour it on top of the jars. Except for that Tupperware container. That’s lunch for a few days.

Store jars in the freezer because you were talking about liver pate with your mom and Thanksgiving is right around the corner and by god SOMEONE is EATING THIS.

Sunday Eats: Fish Sticks and Bacon Mac and Cheese

How. How are fish sticks and mac and cheese a Sunday eat? Well. I can’t just have fish sticks and mac and cheese. Okay, fish sticks, sure. Hit the freezer section and move on with life. But mac and cheese? Mac and cheese in any other house should take the 5 minutes required to cook the Velveeta Shells and add the packet of goo. Not in my house. I must make my own Velveeta. Why? BECAUSE I LIKE REAL CHEESE IN MY CHEESE SAUCE.

I don’t like bechamels. I have a great recipe for real mac and cheese that, while fantastic in the moment, is work and is only good for that one day. reheating breaks it. This is not what I want. I want a Velveeta. I want a loaf of cheese that I can cut off and have it melt consistently every time.

Homemade Velveeta

  • 10g of Sodium Citrate
  • 1.25g Iota Carrageenan
  • 4.5g salt
  • 280g of cheese (sharp cheddar, smoked Gouda, Edam, whatever you like, but REAL CHEESE not preshredded)
  • 75g of wheat beer
  • 100g water

Sodium Citrate : a stabilizer and emulsifier. Salty, acidic. does not require much.
Iota Carrageenan: Gelling agent usually derived from seaweed. This is what makes the loaf…loaf.

Heat the beer and water in a saucepan. Whisk in the Sodium Citrate and the Iota Carrageenan. Add the cheese and salt. Stir until it’s all good and melty and shiny. If you want it in a loaf, pour into a loaf pan lined with plastic wrap. Otherwise pour into a plastic container. It will set fairly fast. But it’s worth it.

Tips: Use a good cheese. If you like strong cheeses, use them. Use a mix. I like smoked gouda and sharp cheddar. For a milder sauce, Edam and mild cheddar. Make it fancy, make it basic. It’s your cheese!

Now we come to the bacon. There was a time when I was curing my own bacon. Because it was fairly simple and cheap and I could cut thick slices with more meat than fat.

Lookit that bacon. Throw those slices into the oven at 400 or so until they’re cooked. Pull them out let them cool and chop up.

Boil your pasta. I used some freaky spiral elbow macaroni.  Whatevers. Add your cooked pasta to your serving bowl, scoop some of that homemade Velveeta (if it’s still warm), maybe a little milk if it’s too thick, then add your bacon. Mix. Serve. Eat.



Not pictured: Fish Sticks. They’re fish sticks. Who cares?