Sautéed Chicken Livers served with Watercress and Radish Salad

For a tasty starter try Kylie Kwong's French-inspired recipe for pan-fried chicken livers, served with a textured salad
By Kylie Kwong
Sautéed Chicken Livers served with Watercress and Radish Salad
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4-6
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Effort: easy



  • 500 g chicken livers
  • 40 ml olive oil
  • 4 shallots, peeled and crushed
  • 1 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 8 tsp white sugar
  • 4 tsp water
  • 90 g French butter
  • 125 ml brandy
  • 125 ml sherry vinegar
  • pinch of cracked freshly ground white pepper
  • toasted sourdough bread, to serve

For the Watercress and Radish Salad:

  • 40 g sprigs watercress
  • 20 g radishes, finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Tips and Suggestions

"I particularly enjoy chicken livers prepared in a French or Italian fashion," says Kylie. "I adore the depth and intoxicating flavour of the reduced brandy, and I use French butter for authenticity. The sweetness of the sugar in this recipe is complemented by the sour yet soft flavour of the sherry vinegar - it is interesting to note that many chicken liver dishes, no matter what cuisine they represent, are teamed with sweet and sour flavours. I believe chicken livers should only ever be served rare, so they retain their silky, rich, delicate texture and flavour."


1. Trim and wash the chicken livers, pat dry with kitchen paper and set aside.

2. Heat the olive oil in a heavy-based frying pan. Add in the shallots and 1 teaspoon of salt and stir over high heat for 1 minute.

3. Add the sugar and cook, stirring, for about 2 minutes, or until shallots are lightly browned.

4. Reduce the heat, add water and simmer for 1 minute to caramelise shallots further.

5. Remove shallots from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside.

6. Add half the butter to the pan and simmer until melted and bubbling, then add half the chicken livers.

7. Fry over high heat very briefly on both sides, so they are lightly browned but still pink in the middle (it is better to undercook the livers at this point).

8. Remove from pan and cover with foil.

9. Repeat with the other half of the butter and chicken livers.

10. Add brandy and vinegar to the pan juices and simmer for about 5 minutes, or until liquid is reduced by half.

11. Return the chicken livers to the pan, along with the remaining salt and the caramelised shallots, and stir over high heat for 30 seconds, or until just heated through.

12. To make the watercress and radish salad, place the watercress, radish, lemon juice, olive oil and sea salt in a bowl and toss gently.

13. To serve, arrange the sautéed livers on a platter and top with the salad.

14. Sprinkle with white pepper, and serve with toasted sourdough bread.

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