Liver is a Super Food!
There are so many reasons we should eat more liver (or liver at all if you are like me). I can be somewhat anemic at times and suffer from hypothyroidism so I really need to add it to my diet on a regular basis. Beef liver is a source of vitamin D, one so many of us are low in.
So what makes liver so wonderful? Quite simply, it contains more nutrients, gram for gram, than any other food. In summary, liver provides: (according to The Weston A Price Foundation )
- An excellent source of high-quality protein
- Nature’s most concentrated source of vitamin A
- All the B vitamins in abundance, particularly vitamin B12
- One of our best sources of folic acid
- A highly usable form of iron
- Trace elements such as copper, zinc and chromium; liver is our best source of copper
- An unidentified anti-fatigue factor
- CoQ10, a nutrient that is especially important for cardio-vascular function
- A good source of purines, nitrogen-containing compounds that serve as precursors for DNA and RNA.
And according to at least 10 websites I visited it is also a decent way to add vitamin D to your diet.
With all that goodness what is holding you back? Oh, the fact that I am talking about LIVER. Only old people eat liver. Liver is gross, tastes like shoe leather (so I have been told, up until today I had never eaten either!) Are you just a little scared of it? I know I was.
Those older people, the ones who grew up eating liver well, they are on to something great - liver is a super food extraordinaire!
So, why am I even talking about liver? Well someone accidentally thawed a package of liver and so I needed to prepare it. I have never tasted liver before today. I always wanted to try it at a restaurant but I was afraid I wouldn't like it and be stuck with a yucky meal.
You know how I hate to waste food so I decided today was the day, it was now or never.
I found an easy recipe at Squidoo - in a post entitled "How to get your kids to eat liver" perfect, because well, when it comes to liver I am definitely a kid. I just made 1 piece of liver to see if I even liked it, so I skipped the carrots in the recipe, but I am sure they would have been delicious.
First I heated up some butter in my iron skillet and added a piece of liver (that I should have salt and peppered but didn't think to until later) I cooked it a couple minutes on each side to brown. Then I dumped in some apple juice and let it simmer for about 10 minutes. That was it. I don't know if I over cooked it or not - but it was brownish in the center and rather mushy. I ended up dipping it in 57 sauce just so I could finish my piece.
I didn't really care for it - but it wasn't terrible either - I was able to eat it. I chopped the rest of it up into little pieces and put back into the freezer
I will add small amounts to my chili's and maybe meat loaf. I would also like adding some raw pieces to my morning smoothie - just teeny little bits, until I can taste it. Update: I ground a pound of it raw up and froze it in icecube trays. I added a cube to my smoothie and couldn't tell at all - this is now my preferred method! Update on the Update - I do this all the time and add the cubes of liver to chili and sloppy joes and spaghetti (up to 1/3 of the meat) as I am browning the meat and no one notices - though they know I do it.
I have also read that soaking the liver in either milk or an acidic juice for at least an hour - more is better, helps to get rid of that distinctive liver taste. Just be sure to drain it well before use.
The next time I have a package thawed I will try cooking it in a more traditional manner with bacon and onions and eat it with mashed potatoes.
It is going to take some doing to become a liver lover, but I am glad to know I don't hate it! Now, my children - that is going to be tricky!!
Liver and Apple Juice (from Squidoo)
- Slice the liver up into flat pieces. You can slice it into strips if you like.
- Quickly brown the pieces in a little butter.
- Stir up the juices left in the pan in a little water. Put the slices back in the pan.
- Cover with apple juice
- Add a couple sliced carrots.
- Turn the pan down low and simmer for 20 minutes or so. Add more apple juice when necessary.
- Serve with mashed potatoes.
So do YOU like liver? How do you prepare it? Does your family LIKE it?
(Check out my post on the importance of Vitamin D and other natural sources of it!)
I am linking this up with Simple Lives Thursday @ A Little Bit of Spain in Iowa
Food Renegade's Fight Back Fridays