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    Sweet and Sour Duck Liver Salad

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    Sweet and Sour Duck Liver Salad

    This is a soft yet crunchy, sweet and sharp, raw and cooked phantasmagoria. Wilted lettuce may sound about as appealing as a wet blanket but it has hidden depths, in terms of both flavour and texture.

    • Preparation time: 30 minutes
    • Cooking time: 8 minutes
    • Total time: 38 minutes 40 minutes

    Serves: 4


    • 1 medium-sized, raw beetroot, peeled and grated
    • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
    • 1 large jerusalem artichoke
    • ½ tbsp dijon mustard
    • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • ½ lemon juice
    • 2 tbsp rapeseed oil
    • 1 tbsp mustard seeds
    • 200g duck or chicken livers, cleaned
    • 3 tbsp dried sour cherries
    • 1½ tbsp honey
    • 190 ml grand marnier
    • 1 head escarole or batavia lettuce, or 2 heads baby gem lettuce, chopped
    • 4 slices sourdough bread
    • 1 garlic clove
    • 1 orange


    1. Prepare the veg first as this dish needs to be made pretty fast so that the livers don’t overcook. Toss the grated beetroot with the red wine vinegar and some seasoning. Scrub the artichoke and, working above a small bowl of iced lemon water, use a veg peeler to create shavings; let them fall into the bowl. Knock up the dressing by putting the mustard in a little bowl, whisking in the olive oil and finishing with the lemon juice and some salt and pepper
    2. Have all your ingredients to hand and warm a wide, thick-bottomed frying pan on a fierce heat. Pour in the rapeseed oil and, when it moves freely round the pan, throw in the mustard seeds and livers and sauté for 5–10 seconds on both sides; the livers should pick up some colour and the seeds start popping.
    3. Chuck in the cherries, pour in the honey and roll the livers around for a second quickly before the honey has a chance to burn. Add the booze immediately; it should bubble and reduce by half within a few seconds. Gently lay the lettuce in the pan, quickly turn with a spoon so that it just wilts, and put a lid on for 1 minute.
    4. Drain the artichoke shavings and put the bread on to toast. Give the pan a quick stir and, once the greens are mostly wilted, pour in nearly all the dressing, give it a toss, and season.
    5. Rub the slices of toast with the garlic clove and put one on each of 4 warmed plates. Share the beetroot between them, then spoon the hot stuff over, making sure the livers are on top.
    6. Finish with some scatterings of crunchy artichoke, the last drizzlings of vinaigrette and a piece of orange on the side, which you should encourage your guests to squeeze on top.

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    Drinks recommendation

    Time for a pink pinot grigio (it includes 12 per cent pinot noir). It's lively and fruity but amendable: just what this dish needs.


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