We are told to avoid throwing away food by buying only what we need, but sometimes it is difficult when plans change, or the food comes in too large a quantity. So, if you have some excess food, whether raw or cooked, why not think ahead and freeze it instead? Some foods, such as salads, cannot be frozen but many can. (NB for safety reasons, food should be frozen as early and quickly as possible).
If you buy a whole, fresh chicken, which has giblets inside, don't throw them away. The liver can be frozen and, when you have enough frozen livers, you can make this quick and tasty dish (see below). You can also make stock out of the rest of the giblets and any leftover bones, instead of using stock cubes or buying expensive, ready-made stock and use it for this dish or for making soup. (Tip: if you plan to freeze stock or soup, try making it with less water and then add the water after defrosting. This will save space as well as the electricity used to freeze it).
Chicken livers are a cheap source of protein and iron and can be bought from a butcher or found in the frozen cabinets of most large supermarkets. There are no bones or waste and they can be cooked in minutes.
CHICKEN LIVERS WITH YOGHURT (Serves 4)
470g (1lb) chicken livers (thawed and cut into bitesize pieces)
30g (1oz) butter
1/2 teasp Marjoram (or any other herb to hand)
1/2 teasp Worcester sauce
1 onion, chopped
15g (1/2oz) flour
a dash of pepper
a pinch of salt
180g (6oz) mushrooms
1/2 cup stock
1/2 cup yoghurt
- Melt the butter and mix in the Worcester sauce and marjoram. Then add the livers and brown very gently.
- Remove the livers and sauté the onion until soft. Blend in the flour and seasonings.
- Add the mushrooms and stock and stir until the mixture simmers.
- Add the livers, cover the pan and simmer for 3-5 minutes.
- Mix 2 tablespoons of the liquid into the yoghurt, then add it all to the pan and stir in gently. Cover again and re-heat the dish without allowing it to boil.
Recipe contributed by Janet Poliakoff