We’ve all heard that organ meats from properly raised animals is one of the highest sources of nutrition, vitamins and minerals…but who really wants to eat liver on a regular basis? Our family has been trying news ways of incorporating these nutrient dense foods into our diet to where everyone can enjoy them, and we wanted to share a few tips and recipes with you.
As always, we recommend organ meats from animals raised outdoors, in low stress environments, on fresh pasture, eating what they were created to eat. Be careful with “organic” organ meats (or any meats…) from grocery stores. The label is confusing and often misleading as to how the animals were actually raised.
1. Organ Meatloaf
This is by far our absolute favorite way to consume organ meats. The meatloaf is so flavorful and moist and the perfect mixture of ingredients completely hides the fact that you are eating liver and tongue. The recipe comes from one of our favorite books “The Nourishing Traditions Book of Baby & Child Care” by Sally Fallon Morell and Thomas S. Cowan MD.
Organ Meat Mixture (makes 2 pounds) – Step 1
1 1/2 lbs fatty meat (pork loin or shoulder, leg of lamb, beef roast, etc)
1/2 lb heart or tongue (we actually like to use 1/2 pound of each, making a total of about 2 1/2 lbs of meat mixture)
1/4 lb beef, chicken or lamb liver
Cut the meat, heart or tongue into chunks and toss together in a bowl. Grate the frozen liver over the meat chunks. Grind the meat in a meat grinder. Use immediately or freeze for later use.
Meat Loaf – Step 2
2 lbs organ meat mixture 1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped (our addition)
1 bunch parsley, finely chopped (can sub about 1 tbsp dried parsley)
2 pastured eggs
2 slices sourdough bread (sub 1 cup finely chopped almonds or walnuts for GF) 1/2 cup raw or cultured cream (or sub whole milk)
1 tbsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp Thai fish sauce (optional but highly recommended)
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 small jar tomato paste
Use a food processor to process sourdough slices (or nuts) into small crumbs. Mix well with the cream and let sit about 5 minutes. Place all ingredients except tomato paste in a large bowl. Mix well with hands. Form into a loaf and place in a 9 x 13 pyrex pan. Add about 1 cup filtered water to pan. Ice the top with tomato paste. Bake at 350 degrees for about 1 1/2 hours.
2. Chicken Liver Pate
Liver pate is another favorite of ours and can be eaten as
a dip or hidden in meatballs, hamburger patties, or
3 tbsp butter or ghee
1 pound chicken livers (you can also incorporate some hearts in this recipe)
2/3 cup dry white wine or brandy
1 cup chicken or beef stock
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/4 tsp dried dill
1/4 tsp dried rosemary
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 stick butter (1/4 cup), softened (or chicken or bacon fat)
sea salt to taste
Melt butter or ghee in heavy skillet. Dry livers well and saute, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes until livers are browned. Add brandy, stock, garlic, mustard, lemon juice and herbs. Bring to a boil and cook, uncovered, until the liquid is reduced by half. Allow to cool. Process in a food processor with softened butter or other fat. Season to taste with sea salt. Place in a crock or mold and chill well.
3. Raw liver
These words may scare you, but hear me out! We have found a couple of ways to get ourselves (including kids!) to eat raw liver without tasting it.
One way is to make scrambled eggs with lots of butter, cheese and good salt, and then grate frozen raw liver into them using a very fine grater. You will see the small specks of red but the flavor will be hidden. Another way is to grate frozen raw liver in brown rice as it is cooking. Yes, the liver will cook so it’s not technically raw. However, the nutrients are still in there and no one will even bat an eye!
We highly recommend trying, at the very least, one of these recipes to get some highly nutritious, vitamin and mineral rich foods into your family’s diet. Your health and your body will thank you! Let us know in the comments if you tried any of these or if your family has other ways of getting organ meats into your diets!
Matt, Rachel, Jackson & Virginia Palma
Restoration Acres Farm
“Food that Restores”