For me, the most shocking part of buying a side of beef was how much liver we got.
A lot. I like liver more than most, and I thought it was too much.
If you have to get through a lot of liver, there’s no better way than to just sear it in a pan and tuck in. When the distinct, glandular texture of liver wearies the palate, there are liver dumplings.
This was a staple when I was in Austria. Lunch always consisted of soup, meat, and dessert, and the soup often contained some manner of offal. Most notable were the soft, bready liver dumplings the size of a toddler’s fist, floating in beef broth.
The biggest problem with liver dumplings is their grey colour. Since the dumplings are simmered, they don’t develop any appetizing golden-brown shades. This can be alleviated somewhat by quickly and aggressively searing the liver before using it in the following recipe.
Beef Liver Dumplings
- 10 oz beef liver (actually calf’s liver would be preferable…)
- 4 oz unsalted butter
- 2 oz onions, finely chopped
- 10 oz worth of day-old rolls, cubed
- 3 oz whole milk
- 4 oz bread crumbs
- 2 eggs
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- parsley to taste
- Soak the rolls in the milk.
- Sear the beef liver over high heat so that it develops a brown crust, but the interior is still rare.
- Let the pan cool slightly. Add the butter. Once the butter is foaming, sauté the onions.
- Combine the soak rolls and the beef liver. Grind the mixture through a 1/4″ plate.
- Combine the ground mixture, the onions, and all remaining ingredients.
- Shape into round dumplings about 2 1/2″ across.
- Poach until the centre is cooked, about 25 minutes.