Monday, February 02, 2015

Does Offal scare you?  Would you cook with it?

I am rather quite fond of all unloved animal parts and I recently worked with TELUS Optik™ to share a little bit of my offal love;


* Pan fried lambs liver with pear and rocket
Trim the liver and cut thinly on the diagonal.  Coat each slice in a mixture of flour, salt, pepper and a little English mustard powder.  Heat a frying pan with a little butter and oil till hot.  Pan fry quickly till golden on the outside and pink in the middle (a minute on each side should do it).  Cut a pear into thin slices and skewer a piece of pear with a few rocket leaves and the liver onto a cocktail stick.

* Lemon, olive oil and red onion beef heart skewers
Trim the heart well, removing all of the fat around the top and the strings from the inside.  Cut into thin strips and marinade overnight in olive oil, lemon juice and a thinly sliced red onion.  Seal the bag and leave in the fridge overnight- this process will start to break down the tough connective tissues of the heart to give you a tender finish when cooked.  The day after, snake the heart onto bamboo skewers that have been soaked in water to prevent burning.  Heat a large frying pan and add a little butter and oil.  Fry quickly until golden on the outside.  Sprinkle with a little chopped parsley and enjoy.  This is a great appetizer and a great talking point for any party!

* Sherry fried lambs kidneys
If the kidney has a whitish skin around it simply cut a small nick and using your fingers push under the skin and remove it.  To allow even cooking throughout, butterfly the kidney.  Place it on your board and place your hand flat over the top of it.  Keeping your knife parallel with the board cut into the kidney half way up.  Cut through till you get about 3/4 of the way through.  Open up the kidney, like a book and its ready to be fried in a hot pan with a little butter and oil.  Cook until golden on the outside and deliciously pink in the middle.  Remove from the pan and add a little more butter then slosh a good helping of sherry in and deglaze the pan.  Drizzle the sherry and butter sauce over the kidney and sprinkled with some chopped parsley.


  • Ask your butcher ahead of time to ensure that they can get you fresh offal for when you need it
  • If you are unsure of trimming the offal ask your butcher and explain what you plan to do with it so they can cut it just as you need it
  • Avoid frozen offal if you can.  The texture of liver can change quite dramatically after freezing and can become almost mushy.  Look for smooth, wet looking offal with a nice deep colour.
Some supermarkets may stock some offal.  If you are buying animals from the slaughter house directly, ensure that you ask them to save the offal for you.  Be aware that offal often has slits in it already and this is done at the time of inspection to ensure that the animals was healthy and fit for the food chain.  If buying from a local butcher, it's best to ask ahead of time.  

A good source for offal in Edmonton is Acme Meat Market.  They are located at:9531 76 Ave.

Prices at Acme Meat Market; Beef heart is $8.70/kg & Lamb liver/Kidneys are $12.99/kg.

So give offal a chance, it's cheap, healthy and super tasty!

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  1. very cool... I've never eaten any of these parts, but dream of one day giving some of these recipes a try, especially after flipping through 'The Whole Beast:Nose to Tail cooking" cook book. Your dishes look like they turned out great!


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