Beef Stock Is Key For Balancing The Strong Flavors In Liver And Onions

Spoon with liver and onions over pot
Spoon with liver and onions over pot - Susan Olayinka/Tasting Table

Liver and onions is one of those classic meals that's packed with unique flavor, yet isn't the sort of dish that is enjoyable for everyone. That's mostly because liver has quite a pungent, earthy taste that some can't stomach, even when paired with other ingredients like slow-cooked onions and herbs. However, beef stock is a simple addition that can actually temper some of the liver's strong flavor. It's what recipe developer Susan Olayinka uses in Tasting Table's original recipe for classic liver and onions.

"This recipe is for people who do not like liver too," says Olayinka. "The beef stock in the gravy helps to cut down on the strong flavor of the liver." So it's a good recipe to try if you enjoy liver but need to serve those who typically scoff at eating any type of organ meat. In the recipe, the liver and onions are combined in a rich but simple gravy made with beef stock and flour, which is what balances the intensity within the dish.

Read more: The 14 Absolute Worst Mistakes You're Making With Meatloaf

Use Chicken Or Vegetable Stock To Offset The Liver Flavor Further

Close up of ladle full of stock
Close up of ladle full of stock - Ahanov Michael/Shutterstock

Beef stock is the go-to ingredient to pair with the beef liver to keep a similar flavor profile, but it's not the only option if you want to balance the flavor even more. Susan Olayinka notes that, to take the intensity down a notch further, you can use chicken or vegetable stock in the gravy instead. For the gravy, the recipe only requires ¼ cup of stock, but you can also add herbs like thyme and rosemary or pieces of bacon to the liver-and-gravy mixture to infuse it with more complementary flavors. This is a good technique for using up homemade stock in the back of your fridge. If you don't have homemade stock on hand, store-bought stock or bouillon cubes dissolved in hot water also work for this recipe.

To turn beef liver and onions into a complete meal, mashed potatoes or rice are the go-to sides because both work to soak up the gravy in the dish, according to Olayinka. If you don't have a preferred recipe for mashed spuds, consider Tasting Table's creamy garlic mashed red potatoes or buy pre-made potatoes to give you more time to focus on getting the main dish right. For a lighter meal to mellow out the richness of the liver and onions, pair the dish with roasted broccoli or Brussels sprouts, a fresh mustard green salad recipe, and couscous or quinoa.

Read the original article on Tasting Table.