Calves liver with onion gravy and bacon

Liver is one of those real Marmite ingredients. You either love it or hate it but it’s always been a favourite of mine, even as a child. Perhaps this meltingly tender calves liver dish served with beer and onion gravy, buttery mash and crisp bacon will make it your favourite too! 

liver and bacon

Serves 2

  • Calves liver slices, not too thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • Butter, rapeseed oil
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1/2 bottle dark ale
  • Rich beef gel stockpot
  • 1 tbsp sherry vinegar
  • 1 tbsp fresh sage, finely chopped
  • Optional: streaky bacon
  • Salt and pepper
  • Mash: Potatoes, cream and butter

To make…

  • First, make the onion gravy. Sauté the sliced onions in a tablespoon of oil until soft and caramelised. Add a tbsp of flour, cook out for a couple of minutes. Stir in the beer and the stockpot. Allow to thicken and cook through on a low heat, season with salt and black pepper. Keep warm until you need to use it. 
  • Next prep the mash. Peel and quarter a couple of large potatoes and simmer in salted water for about 10 minutes until cooked. Drain, air dry and then mash with plenty of butter, a dash of cream and season with salt and pepper. You can use a ricer to get a very smooth mash or mash with a normal masher and whip the fats in with a fork so it’s lovely and creamy. Set aside. 
  • Now for the liver. It only takes a few minutes to cook so it’s important that the mash and gravy are cooked and ready to go and that you have your serving plates warmed.
  • Coat the liver slices in flour. Heat the pan, add the oil, cook the bacon until crisp. Set aside. Add a little more oil if necessary and cook the liver. It will only take a couple of minutes a side to get a good brown colour. Don’t be tempted to overlook it or it will be tough – it should stay soft and be pink inside. Add the butter and sage, nap the liver i.e. quickly spoon the melted butter over the liver, add the sherry vinegar to deglaze the pan. Set aside to rest for a couple of minutes.
  • Plate the liver with the pan juices, the bacon and mash and serve with the onion gravy. 

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About Janet Davies @pigeoncottage

Food lover, author, cook!
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