I am trying to make an effort to include more organ meat/offal in our diets simply because it is so good for us. It is also very cheap, and a great way to keep the grocery budget under control.
I have been reading a lot lately on IPMG about people grinding up liver and hiding it in other foods, usually because either they don’t like the taste, or to hide the “yuck” factor so that kids will eat it. I am lucky in that my kids will willingly eat liver, and Hubby and I both love it, but sometimes it is nice to have a change.
I was already planning on making one of Hubby’s favourite meals – Meatloaf, so I decided that I could add the liver to that.
Here is a warning – when you grind liver in the food processor it goes very sloppy. I just mixed that sloppy, wet mess into my regular meatloaf recipe. It made the mixture a little wetter than normal, but it cooked up OK.
The liver in the meatloaf along with the ground beef, pork and bacon was delicious! It really enhanced the flavour, although I don’t think it was really “Hidden”. I could tell from the flavour that it was in there, but that could be because I left the liver just a little bit chunky instead of blending it until it was smooth.
This recipe is a stage 2 reintroduction because it contains flaxmeal (stage 2 reintroduction) and black pepper (stage 1 reintroduction). When reintroducing foods on the AIP, I recommend this guide.
To make this recipe 100% AIP compliant simply leave out the flaxmeal and black pepper.
Hidden Liver Meatloaf
Makes 2 – each serves 4
- 1lb ground beef
- 1lb ground pork
- 1lb beef liver
- 6 rashers of bacon
- 2 sticks of celery
- 2 carrots
- 1 large onion
- 2 tbsp fat of choice (I used some bacon fat in this, but you could use coconut oil, tallow or lard)
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley – chopped
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried basil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper (omit the pepper if sensitive to it or strict AIP)
- 2 tbsp coconut aminos
- ¼ cup flax seed meal (omit if strict AIP)
The first thing you do is to dice up all the veggies. I chop them in the food processor until coarsely chopped. Don’t let them get to a puree though.
Melt the fat in a skillet and add the chopped veggies, and cook over a medium heat until tender and starting to brown. Now add the garlic and herbs. Season well with salt and pepper.
While the veggies are cooking grind up the liver in the food processor. As I mentioned earlier, it will get very sloppy. I left mine just a little chunky.
Transfer the liver to a mixing bowl along with the ground pork and beef, and use the food processor to grind up the bacon. If you try to do this with the liver, the liver will be over-ground before the bacon is ground up small enough.
Add the bacon to the mixing bowl along with the veggies. Season well with salt, pepper, coconut aminos and fish sauce. Stir in the flax seed meal if using it. It can easily be left out if you want to make this recipe AIP, but it does help the meatloaf to firm up, and it thickens the mixture a little.
Mix the ingredients together – I find this is easiest with my hands. Then transfer the mixture to 2 large loaf tins.
Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F. Cook the meatloaves in the oven for 1 – 1½hours until cooked through. Check the temperature using a meat thermometer if you are not sure. You want the internal temperature to be 70°C (160°F).
Take the meatloaf out of the oven and allow to rest for a few minutes while you make the gravy.
As far as I am concerned, good meatloaf NEEDS gravy! As well as the gravy (recipe below), I also served mashed rutabaga and sauteed kale with this.
- 2 onions – diced
- 2 tbsp fat of choice – I used some leftover bacon fat
- 1 cup good bone broth
- Any pan juices or drippings from the meat (I used the juice out of the meatloaf)
- salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste (omit the pepper if sensitive to it or strict AIP)
- 1 tbsp coconut aminos
- 1 – 2 tsp tapioca flour – optional
Take the onions and cook them over a medium heat in the fat until they are very soft and caremelized. Don’t stint on the browning as this is what gives colour to the gravy.
Once the onions are browned to your satisfaction, add the bone broth and any meat juices you have available, season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper and add the coconut aminos. Simmer for 5 minutes, then blend with an imersion blender. The blended onions help to thicken the gravy as well as adding flavour. If you feel it needs a little extra thickening, add the tapioca flour, mix well and simmer for a couple of minutes.
Serve at once.
This gravy is great to serve with any meats – you don’t even need the pan juices if you don’t have any.