The word offal can strike fear into the hearts of some diners and inexperienced cooks, perhaps because many of us can still recall the nightmarish offal meals of our childhoods: grey, overcooked liver for example, or kidneys that tasted strongly of what kidneys are designed to deal with.
But, livers, kidneys, hearts, tripe, marrow, etc. are versatile and delicious ingredients when handled correctly, and the kind of things we should be eating more of. We certainly need to get over any squeamishness around offal, as we look to cut back on food waste. Then of course you have foie gras, pâté...
Here then are Michelin-starred chefs taking on offal and producing some spectacular-looking dishes, from simple pan-fried liver to savoury custard with a twist.
James Fincham cooks calf’s liver
Mario Batali presents Babbo's fennel-dusted sweetbreads
Heston Blumenthal’s calf’s brain custard
Tom Kerridge cooks crispy pig’s head
Magnus Nilsson’s chicken liver pâté
Tong Chee Hwee's quail egg and beef tongue
Gordon Ramsay’s foie gras with caramelised apples