Eating Nose to Tail

I spent last weekend in Toronto visiting family.  Upon arriving home I was told that dinner that night was a mixed grill, to celebrate my homecoming.  Apparently Mum and Dad had eaten a lot of mixed grills when they were in the UK, and because of my love of all things offal (and my new blog) she wanted to make it for me.  Having never had a mixed grill before Mum explained that it was traditionally kidney's and lamb chops and we were going to serving it with baked tomatoes and sauteed mushrooms.  We were including liver because it's my favorite.  I love liver, and I've been dreaming of a good plate of liver and onions for months; apparently I  mentioned that once or twice.  We had calves liver and kidney's as well as pork kidney's.
Pig kidney
It was Mum's job to prepare the kidney's, and my Uncle's job to prepare the liver.  Mum got side tracked and my Uncle Bunny ended up preparing the liver, and the calves kidney's for the frying pan. 
Liver waiting for flour, and a nice hot pan.
Mum did step in to prepare the pig kidney's
Mum removing the chewy bits.
We had some of my best, oldest friends over as well. Not all of whom like offal, so we also served a sausage from the St. Lawrence Market as well as the lamb chops.  Because this was my party all I had to do was the tomatoes and mushrooms, which was fine with me.

Once the kidney's and liver were about to go into the pan everything began to move fast, so I was in the way no matter where I was standing and trying to take pictures.  I have no idea what Mum and Bunny seasoned everything with, outside of flour, but these kidney's were much better than the kidney's I made earlier this summer.
Liver on the left, kidney's on the right.
Both the liver and kidney's were cooked perfectly, and I'm not 100% of everything that went on, so I'm not sure if I could replicate it.  There was beautiful crisp bacon, and sweet caramelized onions.  The tomatoes were roasted with a bread crumb top and the mushrooms were cooked slowly in red wine.  The lamb chops and sausage were also good, but were second tier compared to the liver and kidney's.
My plate.
We ate out in the garden, and it was dark so excuse the lighting.  In front there's the liver covered in onions and a piece of crispy bacon.  Behind the liver is the lamb chop, sausage and kidney's.  The tomato is at the back next to some fried potatoes and the red wine mushrooms.

Lots of wine and really good friends made the absolutely giant pile of dishes  all over the kitchen seem less daunting.  It was great to be back in Toronto among good friends and family.  And I just happen to be doubly blessed with a group of people who really know how to cook up a kidney.


08/20/2009 14:07

Super big thank you to Jules, Mike and Lumpy who were the super awesome friends elbow deep in dishes after dinner.

Special place in my heart for you and your dishpan hands :)

08/20/2009 14:38

I'm jealous. My parents skipped over the part of Anthony Bourdain's visit to Incanto in San Francisco. The idea of seeing him eat course after course of the best offal in the world was disgusting to them.

08/20/2009 14:47

There's no accounting for taste :)

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