Friday, December 12, 2008

Mark Bittman Nearly Ruined My Dinner,

And Other Short Stories. It started with finally figuring out what to do with a nice Plum Creek veal liver that wasn't getting any younger in the fridge. But I had to go to the store to get some milk. I'm not a big grocery store person. Most of my shopping is done at Cleveland farmers markets followed by places like the West Side Market and Gallucci's for odds and ends. In the winter it's a once every three or so week trip. In the summer when the garden is going it's less. So when I go into a grocery store I get overwhelmed by what's available. And for those around here, I'm talking about Dave's on W25 (which has more crazy smoked pork products than nearly any place in town, but that's another story), not even Whole Foods. All that's to say is that I went in for milk to soak the liver, but came home with a few extras, including frozen raspberries.

The berries happened because I just saw this Bittman post on a super easy sorbet. It's great. It takes no time. I used sweetened condensed milk instead of yogurt because I had some kicking around (I like to make these on occasion). No sugar necessary, but water was. Just awesome.

So, while the pictured collards were cooking away in a pot with a little water, sriracha, salt, pepper, and diced smoked pork jowl, I was taste testing the sorbet. I tasted a lot. And I was filling up. Luckily, as I was running out of stomach space or the desire to eat anything besides partially frozen berries, the sorbet was melting and had to firm up in the freezer, so I was able to get to the liver.

The liver had been soaking in milk for about half an hour along with a sprig or two of thyme. I removed it from the milk, patted it dried, and seasoned with salt, pepper, and some fresh thyme. Then it was dredged in a half cornmeal half flour mix and briefly sauteed over high heat in some lard. Just a few minutes on each side and then the liver pieces were set on paper towels to rest while the pan sauce came together.

The sauce was the highlight of the meal (even compared to the sorbet), and it was simple. Cherry wine, minced onion, more thyme, and some collard green pot liquor. All those things reduced and got syrupy and then a clump of butter was swirled in. I strained the sauce right on the plated cut up pieces of liver, and all was good.

Bovine livers will never be my favorite food in the world. Still, I could eat a lot more of it like this.

*Crap. I meant to throw some cooked apples on top of that. Damn sorbet. Broke my concentration.


Simone said...

Looks delicious, and well written, the sorbet sounds tasty too.

The CFT said...

Glad you liked.