Fare Exchange: Recipes for chicken livers, rice pilaf and fish

Fare Exchange: Recipes for chicken livers, rice pilaf and fish

September 3rd, 2014 by Jane Henegar in Life Entertainment


Fare Exchange is a longtime meeting place for people who love to cook and love to eat. We welcome both your recipes and your requests. Be sure to include precise instructions for every recipe you send.

• Mailing address: Jane Henegar, 913 Mount Olive Road, Lookout Mountain, GA 30750

• E-mail: chattfare@gmail.com

Jane Henegar

Jane Henegar

Photo by Dan Henry /Times Free Press.

Welcome to September and fine fare, for sure. As always we begin with requests, today for wraps and burritos and any recipes plain or fancy for Indian food. Also, please share with us your favorite places to take visitors for one-of-a-kind Chattanooga eateries that reflect local food tastes and local color.

From Pikeville, Tenn., came the carefully handwritten request for "any wrap or burrito recipes. They do not need to be cooked on the stove, oven or microwave." G.C. and her husband, Mr. C., are wanting to entertain visiting friends with a distinctly Chattanooga flavor and secondly to learn Indian cuisine. For the latter, "We would love some easy recipes for beginning and also some special-occasion favorites. We have gotten pretty good with Thai food, and Indian food logically comes next. "

Our friend Marty Vaughn is up next. "I saw that you requested chicken liver recipes (and anyone who loves them loves them fried), but here's a great recipe that my mother used to make. She recently passed away at 104, and so I submit this recipe for Sautéed Chicken Livers in her memory."

Passing on her recipes is a great way to honor a cook's memory, especially one who lived energetically all the way to 104. Mrs. Vaughn's mother is Peg Butler, and her daughter described this dish as "absolutely delicious."

Sautéed Chicken Livers

4 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced

1 small onion, sliced thin

1 pound chicken livers

1/2 cup white wine

Buttered toast

Heat butter and oil, add mushrooms and onions and sauté until brown, stirring occasionally. Add chicken livers and cook 5-6 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add wine and cook stirring to incorporate pan goodies. Serve on hot buttered toast.

(Now there's a memory. I remember the days, says this writer, when lots of creamy rich food was served "on toast points." No more, no more.)

Terry Keister saw a recent request for rice pilaf, and got busy sending it to all of us. "I got this recipe about 45 years ago from my aunt who was a chef in a hotel which catered to Armenian people in New York. I make this quite often and my family and friends really enjoy it. There are many variations on this recipe, but this is what works for us."

Armenian Rice Pilaf

1/2 stick butter

1/4 cup pine nuts

1 handful of thin spaghetti, broken into pieces

1 can beef consommé, heated

1 can (use the can from the beef consommé as your measuring cup) long grain white rice

1 can water, heated

Melt butter in saucepan. Add the pine nuts and spaghetti pieces and sauté until slightly browned. Add the rice and stir until coated completely. Add the heated liquids and stir. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat, cover tightly, cook approximately 20-25 minutes.

The can becomes the measuring cup. In doing any rice this way, the measurement is always 2 cups liquid to 1 cup rice. Additionally, you may use bulgur (coarse ground wheat, No. 3) instead of rice to make Armenian Bulgur Pilaf. Follow the same directions.

It's always good to see Judy Bellenfant's name on an envelope and on a recipe. In sending her version of rice pilaf, she wrote, "While this is not the rice pilaf recipe requested, maybe it would be a basic-enough recipe that could be adapted to suit your reader's taste. It is an easy recipe (I have never had it to fail). I omit the red pepper and add a little more onion but then that is just my preference."

And now the recipe, one that includes saffron, peas, raisins and pistachios.

Rice Pilaf

2 tablespoons butter

1/2 onion, minced

1/2 red bell pepper, minced

2 pinches kosher salt

2 cups long grain rice

2 3/4 cups chicken broth

2 strips orange zest

Pinch of saffron strands, steeped in ¼ cup hot water

1 bay leaf

1 1/2 cups frozen peas, thawed

Golden raisins and pistachios for garnish

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In a heavy, wide, lidded pan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add onion, red bell pepper and kosher salt. Sweat the onions and peppers until aromatic, stirring constantly. Add the rice and stir to coat. Continue stirring until rice smells nutty. Add chicken broth, orange zest, saffron and water and bay leaf. Bring to a boil. Stir once. Then cover pan with moistened dishtowel or tea towel. Place lid on pan and fold towel corners over lid.

Bake in oven for 15 minutes. Rest at room temperature for 10 to 20 minutes without removing the cover.

Meanwhile, simmer peas in salted water until heated thoroughly, or heat in a microwave.

Remove lid from rice and turn out onto a platter. Add peas and fluff with a large fork.

Add raisins and pistachios.

Makes 6 servings.

Curtis G. is an area fisherman, the kind who catches fish and doesn't throw them right back in the water. "I have been catching bass and using my favorite trout recipe to cook them and you can't tell the difference. Any mild white fish will do in this recipe."

Avery Island Trout

8 to 12 trout filets (1/3 pound per person)

Milk to cover (flavored with 1 teaspoon salt and 6 drops Tabasco)

2/3 cup flour

1/2 cup finely chopped green onion

1/2 cup finely chopped green pepper

2/3 cup dry white wine

2 sticks butter

1/2 teaspoon Tabasco for pan

Soak filets for 1 hour with enough flavored milk to cover. Dry fish well and salt generously on both sides. Dredge in flour and shake off excess.

Put 1 stick butter and Tabasco in baking dish (not aluminum) large enough to hold filets without crowding. Place pan on middle rack under broiler and let butter start to bubble. Remove from oven and sprinkle green onions and green peppers in bottom of dish, laying filets on top.

Use remaining butter to dot tops of filets and return to broiler. Cook 15-20 minutes (depending on size of filets), basting twice. When fish are done and browned on top, remove with a spatula to warm platter and keep warm.

Add wine to pan with juices and place over medium flame on top of stove. Allow sauce to bubble rapidly, stirring 3 to 4 minutes. Spoon sauce over fish and serve remaining sauce in a heated sauceboat.

Tasty words, these. And next week there will be more of same, but thoroughly original. I plan to be here, will you?