Attending the Catalan Pig Day cooking class by Rachel McCormack and Anna Colquhoun is a revelation of flavours and textures, as well as a good reminder to use every part of an animal. In the class we cook the pigs head and trotters, use its blood to make morcilla (blood sausages) and make a delicious Mallorcan Fry from its liver and a selection of vegetables.
This traditional Mallorcan dish is cooked and eaten on the day of slaughter, liver being best eaten fresh. It has become a popular and much anticipated breakfast or lunch dish amongst the workers.
Frit Mallorqui (Mallorcan Pig Liver Fry)
Traditionally eaten as a breakfast dish during the annual pig slaughter. The fresh liver does not keep well so needs to be eaten on the day, and provides a very tasty snack for the workers.
- extra virgin olive oil for frying
- 2 fresh bay leaves
- 1 large or 2 medium red bell peppers
- 1 large or 2 medium green bell peppers
- 4-5 large potatoes good for frying, e.g. Maris Piper, peeled
- 3 bunches of spring onions
- 1 courgette
- 1 bulb of fennel
- half a bulb of garlic, minced
- a few dried red hot chilli peppers, e.g. Cayenne, crumbled
- salt and pepper. to taste
- 1 pig's liver
- ½ tsp aniseed
- ½ tsp fennel seeds
- 1 glass of sherry
Cut vegetables and liver into small pieces. Reserve any fennel fronds to chop and add later.
Heat a generous lug or two of oil in a wide frying pan. When the oil is hot add the bay leaves and then fry the vegetables in separate batches. Remove each batch with a slotted spoon, leaving behind the oil and bay leaves. Cook the garlic and chillies with the last batch of vegetables.
Place all the fried vegetables in a casserole dish and season.
Finally, fry the liver over high heat together with the aniseed and fennel seeds. The pieces of liver should caramelise slightly on the outside and remain slightly pink inside. Deglaze the pan with the sherry. Tip contents of pan into the casserole and combine, adding in the reserved fennel fronds.
Check the seasoning once more and serve with crusty bread.
Recipe courtesy of Rachel McCormack.