Yesterday I mixed together 2 separate batches of marinade each consisting of 1 quart of cream with a half a bunch of fresh thyme, 12 black peppercorns, to cloves of fresh garlic (smashed), 1 bay leaf, 2 tablespoons of light brown sugar, and 1 tablespoon of Dijon mustard. One of the batches I simply mixed everything together and added the liver, the second batch I heated to just under a boil and allowed to cool naturally. I used both beef liver and calves liver for this final test. After soaking over night I rinsed each of the eight pieces off in cold water and seasoned them with salt and ground black pepper. The first four pieces cooked (two beef and two calves, one from each of the marinades) were simply dusted in flour and seared in bacon fat. The next four were blanched in salted boiling water for 15 seconds, then dusted in flour, and finally seared in bacon fat. I have to clarify this now, the bacon fat I use is the platinum of all fats, bacon fat from rendered Benton’s bacon.
The results were great. First of the calves liver was far better tasting with a firm consistency than that of the beef liver. They seemed to cook better as well, keeping better form and cooking more evenly. The marinade worked better than expected with the warm infused marinade giving off a much better flavor to the liver. The blanching I found did nothing to benefit the liver at all. My theory was based on the way I like to prepare sweet breads, but like many theories proved to be incorrect. In the end the best piece of liver was from the calf and was marinated with the warm infused cream over night. Light herbs, a touch sweet, still rich with very little metallic taste or after taste, and a slight bite from the Dijon and raw garlic. Overall it was by far the best piece of liver I have ever eaten other than foie gras, which nothing can compete with anyway. Now it is time to perfect the bacon and onion jam, Dijon cream sauce, and Parmesan mashed potatoes to finish the dish with.
What to do with the last piece of the trial?
That is right, make a sandwich out of it. Our fresh made Ciabatta bread with Dijon spread on it, topped with mashed Yukon gold potatoes, bacon lardons, and seared calves liver and shallots. If only I had a fine Chianti…………………….
— matt bolus