Calf liver

I watched a TV program that featured cooking a veal calf liver. Simply dredged in flour and pan sauteed. Not many people eat this liver anymore. I remember having it as a kid, not my favorite but knew it was high in nutrients. Why has it fallen out of favor? Yes, it is high in cholesterol and shouldn’t be consumed everyday. Maybe it is just the aversion to organic cuts that most people think are strange and avoided. If properly prepared, these cuts are just as good as the flesh of animals. Oxtails, lobsters, and chicken wings were once looked down upon and now command ridiculous prices.

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Where are you located? Maybe it’s not popular (anymore) in the US but livers (lamb’s/calf’s/pig’s) are normal food in Europe and readily available.

I eat liver all the time. Sometimes 3 times a week. Just a small portion is enough.

I grew up in NYC and now live in New Jersey, USA. Yes I am speaking from American point of view. On the continent and elsewhere, food is enjoyed for its unique flavors and textures. There is a lot that is missing from the American diet just because of perceived inferior fare. Maybe that is a good thing just to keep the prices reasonable for the rest of us.

I enjoy chicken liver a great deal but have not enjoyed other livers taste.

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I eat liver (calf, beef, pork) quite often as I am borderline anemic.

In fact, last night for Chinese New Year, I made a small batch of beef liver dumplings. Just for moi! :smile:

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Pan fried calf liver with butter and shallot served with raspberry vinegar sauce is just splendid. Here in France, liver is quite common food. I’m anemic as well. Better to consume iron in food than taking iron pills, which is no fun for my system.

Love oxtails, one of my favourite piece in a cow.


Calf liver is divine but most often badly cooked. And equally badly butchered. The French cut it thick and pan fry it “rosy” rare, whch yields a luscious tender mild/gentle slab. Served over a bed of creamed or sauted spinach, it is the food of gods. I have not either found it cut that thick at local shops nor taken the time to try to get my butcher to cut it that way for me.
ETA, @naf, oxtail rocks! A combo of oxtail and short rib is one of my “knock their socks off” dinner party mains.


I grew up eating calf’s liver and onions and really like it. My only issue is that most sources sell it only in a thin cut (1/3” or so). I’m the only one in the family who will eat it so it’s not often.

It was my childhood nightmare, mom served (over)cooked pork liver and we couldn’t leave the table without finishing them.

Right. In our home, it was 1/3" thick slices of calf liver cooked to boot sole.

Can’t do it due to childhood trauma. We had to eat it once in awhile, smothered with onions, ketchup on the side. Never did like it.


Not only boot sole, but iridescent as well when I was growing up. Started eating it again during trips to Italy. If anyone’s in Brooklyn and restaurants remain re-opened, come to Noodle Pudding (an Italian place on Henry St near the Brooklyn Bridge). Great versions, varying the accompaniments but always with excellent liver.


Lamb’s and chicken liver is very common in the UK. Pigs liver isnt consistently available but I really only use it to make pate so I think ahead and buy it when I see it. Calves liver very common in restaurants, particularly Italian ones - there’s a restaurant near home where I will pretty much always order the Venetian style liver (sliced thin, briefly fried, with very long cooked onions)

By the by, pigs liver features in one of my favourite Spanish dishes - Frito Mallorquin (or Frit de Matances)

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When you can go out again and the shops are open, check out Muslim butcher’s shops. They should have all kinds (save for pig’s). At least where I am they do. My organic butcher also has them but costs more of course. Whenever I visit either one I just buy different animals’ livers available.

I’m with you. A childhood of liver and onions was enough for a lifetime.

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I’ll have a close look. We have several in the area. Whilst they are open, we’re not visiting shops right now. Not even the organic butcher - although by this time next week, we’ll both be three weeks on from the first vaccine jab so should be safe enough to risk a trip. We do generally prefer to buy organic or free range meat, hence not really knowing what the butchers sell at the Asian shops.

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Probably not your mama’s calf liver

DH was used to his mother’s boot leather liver, but once he tried my plate in France, he was a convert. Thick cut, tender, mild, delicious!


Can someone start a general offal thread? I don’t want to hijack this thread but can you tell me more about the preps for the 2 liver dishes you mentioned? I always interested in learning how other cultures eat livers. Pan-frying and pates are the most common ideas/recipes.

Only eaten both dishes in restaurants, so no detailed idea about the prep. Lots of recipes out there though, for both.

Ah, OK. Thanks. I’ll look them up.