The Never-Doubt-Dorie Moment: Mme. Maman’s Chopped Liver

Mme Maman's Chopped LIver

The French Fridays with Dorie Celebrations continue!  This week we go over those Never-Doubt-Dorie moments.  FFwD cooks will reminisce about those recipe that made us raise our eyebrows while we went along for the ride.  I looked for the scariest ingredient I hadn’t worked with yet – chicken livers.  Here’s the account of my experience whipping up Mme. Maman’s Chopped Liver.   

(Law & Order style ‘Dun Dun!’)

Thursday June 4, 2015
8:00am

Green spots?

Veins?

It’s not the same to face the deep-sea creatures of the food world when they are breaded, fried or smothered in delicious sauces. And plated and prepared by professionals that bring out the best of these ingredients.  These chicken liver yakitori we enjoyed for the Puerto Rico Restaurant Week kick-off party look perfectly fine.   They were smooth, melt-in-your-mouth delicious.  Did they really have green spots and veins before?  And how big were those?

Chef Raul Correa’s chicken liver yakitori

For someone who takes pride on her adventurous palate (veal brains and sweetbreads, monkfish liver, spicy blood sausages), it scares me a little what I might find in the little plastic container I’ll take home later today.  Just a little.  It’s not like chicken livers are the size of… well, the rest of the “everyday” chicken cuts.

Could Mme. Maman’s chopped liver turn into a Never-Doubt-Dorie moment?  You bet.  It has paid off before. You’d never think that before French Fridays with Dorie I had never tried seemingly tame home roasted beets, sardines, and lentils.  How could I miss out on those before?  All that ‘wasted time’ fuels my recent-found greed for new tastes.

(Dun Dun!)

Thursday June 4, 2015
7:00pm

It’s easier to trust an AMFT recipe when the ingredients list is sparse.  Two onions, oil, the livers, and a few spices.  I decided to hold off the eggs, at least for this first time.

Once the onions were in the pot, it was time to face the new guys in the kitchen.

Mme Maman's chopped liver

I thought of commissioning the image of the chicken liver monster to my godsons. They would have done a better job than me.

So… when the moment arrived, the Puerto Rican poultry industry came through.  Other than trimming a little fat, I didn’t have to do anything to the livers other than sauté them for a couple of minutes.  The rest of the preparation was smooth sailing.  Once the liver and onions were combined, I took about a third of the mixture and whirled it in the food processor to make a spread, using some the rendered fat.  The rest went into a bowl and into the refrigerator as well to chill for a couple of hours.

This exchange did happen…

“I’m not going to eat that.”

“You ate April Bloomfield’s chicken liver spread – two orders worth of it.  On a business trip – without me! And you will not try MINE, er, Dorie’s?”

“Perhaps.”

(Exasperated sigh.)

(Dun Dun!)

Friday, June 5th

6:00am

A baguette went into the oven for warming up.  I took out the bowl of Mme. Maman’s chopped liver and the smaller container of the liver spread.  I am not sure if it was the time of day but they didn’t look particularly appetizing.  I grabbed a small piece of the liver.

Eh.

A caramelized onion.

Mmh.

A smidge of the spread.

Alright.

And it all went into the food processor.

Mme Maman's Chopped Liver

(Dun Dun!)

Mme Maman's Chopped LIver

I could have gone the AHA moment route with the food discoveries I made during the French Fridays run.   However, Dorie Greenspan should get credit – as others have said before – for gently nudging us towards new food experiences both in and out our kitchens.  There is something even more revelatory about taking those food adventures home.  While I would never make blood sausages at home, I know I can whip up a delicious chicken liver spread.

French Fridays with Dorie cooks and bloggers have worked their way through Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table for the last four years and change.  It’s time to celebrate it!  For more lessons on conquering culinary challenges and never-doubting-Dorie, click here.   

Mme Maman's Chopped Liver

No Gatamiaux!

Mme Maman's Chopped Liver

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Author:Adriana

Adriana is a financial analyst by day, avid home cook in the evenings, and food blogger and runner in the strange hours between those two. When not in the kitchen concocting meals and stories to pass around, she is out looking for the next great bite (or the ingredients to make it at home), checking what's new at the market, or planning a trip around great food and wine.

18 Responses to “The Never-Doubt-Dorie Moment: Mme. Maman’s Chopped Liver”

  1. June 5, 2015 at 8:25 am #

    Good for you! I have to admit that I am totally scared off by the chicken liver recipes. All the talk of green spots and veins makes me want to run for the hills, especially when I know that I have never ever liked a single chicken liver pate that I’ve had that was prepared by a professional. I always taste pate when someone around me has it, and I just don’t like it. Motivation to try making my own? 0.

  2. June 5, 2015 at 9:05 am #

    Sigh. My experience with the gateaux didn’t end quite so well – even my parents, who made me all sorts of liver while I was growing up weren’t fans of this one (I figured turn about was fair play – at least I didn’t make them sit at the table until all the liver was done).
    This post was great for a Friday morning smile.

  3. June 5, 2015 at 1:25 pm #

    So happy to see that someone posted a liver recipe. I am one of those weirdos who actually likes liver and I absolutely loved every one of Dorie’s recipes.

  4. June 5, 2015 at 2:31 pm #

    Great post! I think you’ve hit on a pilot for Dorista TV.

    I am, like Rose, a liver-loving-weirdo and this dish was a hit for me. My parents loved it, too.

  5. June 5, 2015 at 7:07 pm #

    Yeah, I was a wee bit taken aback with that description of chicken livers, too! I took my chopped liver to a party so it wouldn’t just sit in my fridge uneaten—and I was a fan, too!

  6. June 5, 2015 at 8:42 pm #

    I love your Law & Order dun-duns! This recipe is the perfect example of the Dorie adventure. How many of us had cooked with chicken livers before this? Not me.

  7. June 5, 2015 at 9:27 pm #

    I didn’t make this recipe because I am not eating organ meat. I have had many a fried liver and onions as a kid. A little pastey but not bad. This looks wonderful… I think the processing made all the difference. Bless your adventurous palate.

  8. June 6, 2015 at 6:29 am #

    The chopped liver was on my list too! Sounded yuk but was soooo good.

  9. June 6, 2015 at 9:38 am #

    Cleo was a huge fan of all the liver dishes too 😉

  10. June 6, 2015 at 10:24 am #

    Love your post!! It’s fun to read and see the challenges that Dorie’s helped us get through! Oh, and your chicken livers look great! And what a tease to your cat! 🙂

  11. Nana
    June 6, 2015 at 7:51 pm #

    That was one recipe I loved and was looking forward to making. Jim and I love chicken
    livers in any form, but especially chopped liver spread.

  12. June 6, 2015 at 10:10 pm #

    That is a great liver story. I have not tried this yet but my husband is a liver lover (ha, ha) so it will eventually get made.

  13. June 7, 2015 at 8:58 pm #

    Funny post Adriana:) I am a chicken liver lover and married to a chicken liver lover so we were familiar with the oddities of raw chicken liver. Good for you for pushing through!

  14. June 8, 2015 at 9:36 am #

    Love your kitty getting in on the action. 🙂 This was a scary recipe for me too!

  15. TheKitchenLioness
    June 8, 2015 at 2:10 pm #

    Adriana, what a fun post – great reminder – I think I almost forgot about that recipe. Since we live in a country of liver wurst lovers, I was not that surprised that we actually liked his one but it was certainly quite entertaining to read all those posts from some of the exasperated Doristas. Great choice for the “Never-Doubt-Dorie-Moment”!
    Andrea

  16. June 12, 2015 at 6:21 pm #

    Dorie certainly has gotten all of us to try things that we otherwise wouldnt have 🙂 I love E’s reaction to the liver though – cuz my entire household had that attitude about it and no one liked it, not even Patella in the end…. LOL but she only got a bite and walked away, too much onion in it to be safe for her to eat!

    • June 12, 2015 at 6:26 pm #

      The very reason why I shooed Gatamiaux.

  17. June 17, 2015 at 10:17 pm #

    I forgot how good this one was. I need to make it again. I know your shooed Gatamiaux, but I shared a little bit with Bella. The tiniest bit in her bowl makes her eat all her food.

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