Just Visiting… Somali Food Saves Friday Dinner

Don’t you just love it when everything comes together and works out as if it were planned?  That’s how I felt today when (as usual at the end of the week) I was stuck with only a handful of things left in the fridge and not a whole lot of time and energy to put it together into something that a human would eat.  Today was double tough on me — a large hunk of lamb liver was staring at me from the fridge shelf and saying, “you know they are not going to eat me, no matter what you do“.

lamb liver, cleaned and chopped

Yes, I know it.  No one in my family eats liver, except for me.  And I love it.  Here in our area, it’s almost impossible to get some.  So my thoughtful husband brought some super fresh lamb liver to me from Atlanta’s market.  And now that we are down to almost nothing in the fridge, it’s time to do something with it.

This pancake looks like a moon of some remote planet

Usually, I don’t mess with live too much.   It’s great in as-close-to-raw-as-possible form, so quick saute with onions always does the trick.  Sometimes, if I feel particularly marthastewartly, I make a batch of pate.  But these options are great for me, and they work especially well when I have a back up plan for the rest of the family.  Today I didn’t, so I had to get creative and find something more exciting and less liverly in flavor.

Poking around, I found this great site: http://www.mysomalifood.com.  I knew right away I was going to be a fan.  Simple, well explained authentic recipes, very easy to imagine how they are going to be cooked and put together, clean design and simple language.  I loved it.  And here, smack in the middle of the exotic recipes from the Horn of Africa, I found something that promised a good dinner with a hint of adventure.  This page supplied a simple yet rich in flavor recipe for liver called Beer, which could be served with a kind of flat pancakey cornbread called Lahooh.  Exotic, yet somehow familiar and comforting.  I thought, if my five-year-old won’t eat liver, at least she won’t turn down a stack of warm corn pancakes. Instant win!

I don’t think it’s necessary to re-post the recipes here, since I followed them accurately (minus green chilies).  Suffice it to say that it all turned out really great. Liver, sauteed slowly with vegetables which already released their juices, turned out to be not mushy, and not too firm, but just tender enough to appreciate the texture.  For those who feel that liver’s flavor is a bit too strong, this is a perfect starter dish.  Lemon offsets some of the strong side of the flavor, but doesn’t overpower it.  I imagine that green chilies would enhance the flavor and give it much desired kick, but I didn’t happen to have them on hand today, and I can tell you I didn’t miss them one bit.

The corn pancakes were, just as promised on the page — addictive. We demolished the whole stack in no time.   Will definitely make again, and rest assured, will be visiting the site many times over.

Delicious Somalian liver recipe

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Categories: Cool Stuff, Dinner, Main Courses, Quick & Simple, Traditional Nutrition

Author:Eat Already!

I am a cooking and writing addict born and raised in a cosmopolitan city on the Black Sea coast. Currently my interests include, but not limited to gardening, traditional nutrition, raw milk, fermentation techniques, books by Sitchin, Weston A. Price ideas, artisan bread making, anything handcraft, and many other, quite random, things. I believe in making things from scratch, in unpretentious dishes, visually un-altered food esthetics. I believe in reporting on daily cooking endeavors, not just on special occasion dishes. I believe everyone should learn how to cook at home because it's a great way to connect with your loved ones without saying too much, with your heritage without becoming an archivist, and with the world without learning languages...

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