Sunday, March 3, 2013

In the Beginning Was the Chicken AND the Egg: Frittata with Chicken Liver and Spinach!

Well, I do think it just might be time for a walk through memory lane.  See, Don and I have been cooking together for a long, long time.  You might say a really, really, long time.  And "In the beginning", there was a chicken and an egg!

The first time Don and I cooked together was in the late summer of 1993.  The occasion took place in Oklahoma- and was brunch.  Neither of us had any idea at that time how many times this beautiful ritual would be reenacted in kitchens across the many states we have traveled- and sometimes lived.

Now of course at the time I had NO IDEA that Don HATED liver!  And also given how very new this "cooking together" was- he didn't mention this for years- not that liver was ever a staple in either of our diets.  For certain one of the things that has changed over these many years- you can trust me on this- Don is rather clear about his likes and dislikes in and out of the kitchen!

But back those many years ago, Don quietly browned those chicken livers without even the faintest of gags!  

In today's environment it is a bit more difficult to find chicken livers (am I the only person in the world who thinks they are one of life's delicacy's- bring on the pate').  But with a very accommodating neighborhood butcher shop we were able to get ours absolutely free!  Guess it has something to do with "supply and demand"! (We'd show you the "raw" livers, but decided that in order to keep you reading we best just show how they arrived in our kitchen!)

But enough of that!  It's time to get on with the cooking!

Frittata with Chicken Liver and Spinach!



Eggs: 6
Vermouth: 1/4 cup 
Butter: 4 Tbsp
Salt and Pepper
(The brilliant addition of Vermouth is from Chef Frank DeCarlo, a NYC chef according to Mark Bittman.)


Chicken Livers: 2 whole ones
Green Onions: 1 cup, chopped- Be sure to include some of the green tops as well.
Spinach: 2 BIG handfuls- I use baby spinach so the size is perfect!
Gruyere Cheese: 1 cup, grated

(You can be as creative as you wish here with the ingredients.  Try other cheeses.  Substitute Italian sausage or bacon. Or leave the meat out.  Consider mushrooms.  And then maybe be really daring with swiss chard rather than spinach. The possibilities are endless!)


Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Using a 12 inch non-stick, oven proof skillet, melt 2 tbsp of butter. (I really must insert a commercial here.  If you're looking for a good, durable, environmentally friendly non-stick pan I highly recommend the "scanpan". You can find it at Amazon.)

Cook the chicken livers until almost done, then add the green onions and cook long enough to soften.

When the chicken livers are completely cooked, remove both the livers and green onions from the pan.  Chop the livers into small pieces.

Wilt the spinach in the butter left in the skillet. 

Remove from the pan.

In a large glass mixing bowl, thoroughly blend the eggs with the vermouth. 

 I use a stick blender for this. (Not sure how I would survive in the kitchen without my stick blender.  We've had our Breville so long now our particular one is no longer on the market.  We've bought several of the Cuisinart for family and friends.  Do be careful with the stick blender as this article in the New York Times points out.  It can be quite dangerous in the kitchen!

Gently stir in the chicken livers, green onions, spinach and cheese.

Salt and Pepper to taste.

Melt the remaining 2 tbsp of butter in the skillet.  When the butter is melted and the pan is hot, pour in the egg mixture. Using a silicone spatula gently lift up the edges of the egg mixture as it sets on the bottom of the skillet.  

Cook on the stove top for approximately 2 minutes, then place the skillet in the preheated oven for an additional 10 minutes until the Frittata is cooked through.

Since we were having our Frittata for dinner we served with a side salad and crusty bread roll.  Wine of course!