Chicken Livers with Caramelized Onions and Madeira

  • Active Time 20m
  • Total Time 20m

Serves 4

Rich-tasting caramelized onions combined with Madeira make a spectacular sauce for chicken livers. Serve with rice or over toast so you won't miss a single drop.
The rich and luscious Madeira sauce is ideal with fruity, spicy grenache-based wines. A Gigondas or a Cotes-du-Rhone from the Rhone Valley in France or a bottle of grenache from California would be appropriate.


  • 3 tablespoons cooking oil, divided
  • 3 onions, sliced thin (about 4 cups)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper, divided
  • 1 1/4 pounds chicken livers, each cut in half
  • 1/2 cup Madeira
  • 1 hard-cooked egg, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


In a large frying pan, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over moderate heat. Add the onions, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/8 teaspoon of the pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are well browned, about 15 minutes. Remove the onions from the pan and put on a serving platter or individual plates.

In the same frying pan, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil over moderately high heat. Season the chicken livers with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Put the livers in the pan, in two batches if necessary, and cook for 2 minutes. Turn and cook until browned, about 2 minutes longer. The livers should still be pink inside. Remove the chicken livers from the pan and put them on top of the onions.

Return the pan to the heat and add the Madeira. Boil rapidly, scraping the bottom of the pan to dislodge any brown bits, for 1 minute. Pour the sauce over the livers and the onions. Top with the egg and parsley.



Use 1/2 cup of dry sherry instead of the Madeira.


Use 1/2 cup of port instead of the Madeira.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Food and Wine. All rights reserved.

RecID 1415

nutrition information per serving

364 calories; 17g total fat; 675mg cholesterol; 570mg sodium; 16g carbohydrates; 2g fiber; 28g protein

These nutrition facts are calculated according to the ingredients listed in this recipe. Any substitutions will change these facts. Although we strive for accuracy, please note that food manufacturers occasionally change their food formulas, which could affect the calculations as shown.

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