When buying pork liver, avoid ones with grayish spots. Also avoid liver with a surface that looks wrinkled. Liver with with gray spots and those that look wrinkled have likely no longer as fresh as they should be for culinary reasons as well as for health and and sanitation considerations.
Like most organ meats (a.k.a. offal), pork liver has a strong smell. But you can easily neutralize that by adding the correct spices in the marinade. Ginger is my number one choice. Lemongrass is a close second. You may use one or both.
What are Chinese chives? The botanical name is Allium tuberosum but, commercially, it is also called garlic chives, Asian chives or Chinese leeks. It is a common ingredient in dumplings and steamed buns. In stir frying, it is used pretty much the way scallions and green onions are used.
To cook this dish, start by coating the bottom of a frying pan or wok with oil. Spread the drained marinated liver slices and leave to sear before turning over.
Add the reserved marinade and the Chinese chives. Stir fry just until the liver loses all traces of “bloody” appearance. By that time, the marinade would have been soaked up and the Chinese chives wilted.
Full recipe below
Pork liver stir fry with Chinese chives
- 300 grams pork liver
- ½ teaspoon grated ginger
- ¼ teaspoon grated garlic
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon lime or lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon cooking oil
- 1 tablespoon sesame seed oil
- 1 bunch Chinese chives - cut into two-inch lengths
- Rinse the liver and wipe dry with paper towels. Optionally, for easier slicing, freeze the pork liver for an hour or so or until partially firm.
- Slice the liver into quarter-inch slices.
- In a mixing bowl, stir together the ginger, garlic, soy sauce, lime or lemon juice, oyster sauce, pepper and sugar.
- Add the liver to the marinade and mix well.
- Cover the bowl and marinate the liver slices in the fridge for at least two hours.
- Drain the liver slices. Reserve the marinade.
- Heat the cooking oil and sesame seed oil in a wok or frying pan. Swirl to coat as much of the cooking surface with oil.
- When the oil starts to smoke, spread the liver slices on the cooking surface. Try to have all pieces in a single layer.
- Cook without disturbing for about two minutes then flip them over. Cook for another minute.
- Pour in the marinade and the Chinese chives to the liver. Stir fry for a minute or just until the liver slices have soaked up the marinade.
- Serve immediately.