All the Spokane food-related stuff that I can't figure out how to wedge into my other blog.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Chicken liver omelet

One of the first things my mom taught me to make was a chicken liver omelet. I've always been a freak for chicken liver.

Fun fact: Did you know there was a time in the late 70's when you could get a liver bolognese at the Spaghetti Factory? Can you imagine how great that would be today? There was also a Sundae Burger at the Onion at about the same time. I think it was #33. We didn't go out much when I was a kid, but when we did, I did it up.

Anyway. Mom taught me to make a chicken liver omelet when I was 4 years old. My parents had divorced and I lived with my sister and mom in a little 2-room house in Onion Creek, Washington. The house was quaint in that non-running water, non-electrified, out house kind of way. So mom taught me how to cook an omelet on a wood cook stove.

Liza prefers her yearly liver sans omelet

That was the beginning of my love of big thick steel for cooking. Nearly everything was cooked either in a cast iron pan or in the case of quesadillas, right on the stove top.

I love wood cook stoves. Very versatile: you have this big hot platform where you can boil water on one section, keep something warm on another, fry on another, all while baking in the oven. They rule and once you get to know them, they are very dial-in-able.

About 8 years ago, I got my dad to bring me an old chestnut for baking. Once we got it dialed in, the baking was great, but we also found it great for making jam and other outdoor cooking projects. If we had a bigger place, we'd still have a wood cook stove.

Anyway. Thanksgiving time is about the only time I have a liver omelet anymore. Liver isn't on the menu here much. If I were making this for guests, I'd make this a bit different. I'd cook it in a proper omelet pan to make sure I could easily turn the egg to cook it 'merican style without browning it.

I like a bit of wet to my omelet. In my experience, wet liver omelets don't go over so well with family and friends. But whatever -- this recipe makes it right -- for me and in the memory of my mom, who appreciated the same preparation: in a cast iron pan, cooked from the bottom till it browns a hair and folded onto the plate. With cheddar of course. Normally we'd use chicken liver, but this is with turkey liver.


  • A bit of liver. If you are using chicken liver, then 3 livers is about right. For turkey, maybe 2. Cut the turkey liver into chicken liver sized chunks (think fig size... for lack of a better example)

  • Onion or shallot, about a teaspoon minced. (optional, we didn't do this back in the day)

  • Butter. Canola oil.

  • Couple tablespoons of shredded cheddar

  • S&P

  • Two eggs, beaten with a splash of milk

That's too much liver for one omelet. Some of that is for Liza.


  1. Warm your cast iron pan on medium high heat.

  2. Season the room temp liver with a dash of salt and pepper.

  3. Add a hearty teaspoon of butter to the pan. Add a dash of canola oil to keep the butter in check.

  4. Fry the onion/shallot for a minute or two to soften.

  5. Add the liver to the hot pan. It should sear. Put a screen over the pan. Sometimes liver likes to blow up. Consider turning the heat down if there's a lot of noise and activity in the pan.

  6. Cook until the liver starts to bleed a bit. Good fresh liver from a source you trust can be cooked until it's just pink in the middle. Don't over cook it. It will cook a bit more in the omelet. Pull it off the heat and wipe out your pan. You may need to let the pan cool for a minute or two.

  7. Turn the heat down to medium.

  8. Put another hearty teaspoon of butter in the pan. It should sizzle, but not brown immediately. If it browns immediately, you're still too hot.

  9. Pour the egg in the pan and do the omelet thing where you push the egg towards the center to cook the liquid egg. Do this until the egg sets.

  10. Lay the liver down the middle of the omelet, sprinkle with cheddar, season a bit with s/p.

  11. Roll the omelet out onto a warm plate.

  12. Eat with toast.


  1. Yum. And I don't think I like liver. We'll try it with the turkey liver.

    Your cast iron skillet looks like it's perfectly seasoned.

  2. Let me know what you think Kelly. Thanks for the cranberry relish too. Looks rad.

    The pan is ok. I could be nicer to it. But I'm going to re-season the steel stuff in December.


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