Today I present you with another favorite liver recipe. Layered liver cake is part of my national Ukrainian cuisine, however I was first introduced to it by my mother-in-law. It is not a dish typically made in the part of Ukraine that my family is from, so perhaps it is a regional cuisine.
There are many different ways of making layered liver cake. I was a bit overwhelmed by all the variations but decided to experiment with a few of them.
I definitely recommend beef vs. chicken liver for this recipe. It’s my personal preference; I think it just simply tastes better. Most of the recipes call for some flour, but I decided to use soaked buckwheat instead. You can even forgo the buckwheat altogether and still end up with good liver crepes, however I enjoy the flavor the buckwheat adds. The carrot and onion filling is optional as well and can be omitted to save time. But let's be honest, carrots and liver go together so well, that it would just be a shame to leave them out.
The dill can either be used as garnish, like I have done, and/or added directly to the aioli. To avoid a dry cake, don’t skimp on the mayo. Some of it will get absorbed into the crepes as the cake sets. Cucumbers, tomatoes, parsley, green onion, crumbled egg yolk, shredded hard cheese, and olives are just a few more ideas for garnish. I have also included my favorite homemade mayo recipe from Butter Believer to create the aioli.
¾ to 1 lb. beef liver (grass fed preferred)
2 raw eggs
½ cup half & half (or milk)
½ cup unroasted whole buckwheat, soaked overnight in water and rinsed clean
2 tsp sea salt
2 onions, thinly sliced or minced
2 carrots, grated
2 – 3 garlic cloves, crushed
½ cup mayonnaise (homemade preferred, recipe included)
Fresh dill weed, chopped finely
Cucumbers, sliced halves
Wash the liver in a bowl of room temperature water. Place the liver, eggs, buckwheat, half & half, and sea salt into a blender. Blend into a smooth, batter consistency. Melt a pat of butter in a pan over medium heat. Pour a thin layer of batter onto the pan, forming a thin crepe. Cook for a few minutes on each side until golden brown. Repeat with the rest of the batter. Let cool slightly.
In the meantime, sauté the carrots and onions in butter, until soft and mix crushed garlic into the mayo.
To put the cake together, place a liver crepe onto a serving dish, evenly spread with about ½ - 1 tablespoons of the aioli and top with about ½ tablespoon of the carrot/onion mixture. Cover with the next crepe and repeat. Spread the top crepe with mayo and garnish with fresh dill weed and cucumbers. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, preferable overnight. Cut into wedges and serve cold.
Coconut Oil Mayo
1 whole egg
2 egg yolks
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
Juice of ½ small lemon
½ tsp sea salt
½ cup olive oil
½ cup coconut oil
In a blender mix the eggs, yolks, mustard, lemon juice, and sea salt. Melt the coconut oil over very low heat. Slowly pour the melted coconut oil, followed by the olive oil, into the blender while running it at a low speed. This will allow the mixture to emulsify and thicken.
Traditionally liver cake is served as an appetizer, however with a green salad it can also make the perfect lunch. Although not a traditional Easter dish, it might look impressive on your table this weekend!
Rejoice! He is risen! Hope you have a blessed Easter weekend, friends!