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Canapes with chicken livers

  • 4 chicken livers, cleaned and chopped
  • 1/2 onion cut into small slices
  • a handful of pickled capers
  • 1/2 meat stock cube
  • 1/4 of a tube of anchovy paste
  • 50 grams of butter
  • 3 spoons of olive oil
  • 1/2 of white wine
  • salt and pepper
In a small saucepan with a thick bottom, put oil and the slices of onion and let them brown for 4-5 minutes over a medium-brisky heat. Then add the chicken livers, turn this stuff very well and let it brown without attaching. After 4-5 minutes add the meat stock cube and the white wine, turn this mixture while it is evaporating, then, after 2-3 minutes, add the pickled capers, the first 30 grs. of butter, the anchovy paste and a pinch of pepper. Turn it, let it mix by increasing the heat for about 2 minutes more. Then take out from the heat, let it cool down and put this mixture in a blender together with the 20 grs. of butter. Mix this stuff very well until you have a thick purée. Taste it and if necessary add some more salt, capers, anchovy paste, butter or whatever, and eventually mix once again as to have a homogeneous purée. Spread this sort of sauce over very fresh slices of white bread, without bathing with broth or whatever.
This is the most classical Tuscany appetizer. It is possible to find this recipe at the beginning of every lunch in all the Tuscany areas, even the taste can slighlty changes due to variations of the main ingredient (spleen, rabbit liver or game liver, and so on...). Its origin is probably Etruscan and it should be linked to the pagan cerimony of the bloody animal sacrifice to gods, whose ritual (a food rite) started with the division of the victim liver between the people ordering the sacrifice, and with this action it could be established the maximum solidarity and conviviality between them.

A Giuseppe Alessi recipe
Translated by Gianna Toni
Picture by Kee-Ho Casati


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