Bucatini with Chicken Livers and Cherries
(or Bucatini con Fegato e Ciliege)
Who knew bucatini was so awesome? Apparently, many people did, but I was still stuck in the spaghetti/fettucine world. Bucatini is a robust, tubular pasta that is longer than traditional spaghetti. It is hollow, allowing maximum absorption of sauce. A favored pasta for cacio e pepe, bucatini is not something that is found in many grocery stores. You may need to visit a specialty grocery store or buy it online. Here is what I bought. Yes, it is rather pricey. However, you really don’t need a lot of it to make the dish.
4 servings (with a side salad)
You will need 2 frying pans and a pot to boil the pasta. Pan #1 will be the larger.
- 1 lb chicken livers, cleaned and cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1 C dried cherries (fresh good as well, but use 1 ½ C chopped in that case)
- 1 C large diced mushrooms (1/2 inch)
- 1 C chopped onion—large chunks (1/2 inch)
- 2/3 C red wine
- ½ C chicken broth
- 4 T garlic
- 3 T honey
- 2 C fresh spinach
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 T dried sage or 3 T fresh sage
- 3 T EVOO
- 6 T butter
- 8-12 oz bucatini (plus 4 T salt for the cooking)
- 1 ½ C finely shredded parmesan cheese
- Start your water and salt to boil for the bucatini. Add the noodles once boiling and boil for 12-14 minutes depending upon your liking. Keep checking.
- Sauté onions, cherries, and mushrooms in EVOO in pan #1. Once those are half cooked, add broth, wine, salt and pepper, and honey. Let continue reducing.
- Meanwhile, in pan #2, add 3 T butter. When hot, add chicken livers, cook for 3 min. Toss, then add garlic and fresh spinach. Cook long enough to get garlic sauteed and spinach wilted—about 1-2 minutes.
- Then add all the above to pan #1, which should be now reduced to a gravy like consistency. Take off the burner and add the remaining 3T butter.
- Remove bucatini from pot with tongs and add to the pan of sauce/liver/cherries. Stir around. (If the sauce is too thick, you can add some broth or water from the bucatini cooking pot.)
- To serve, put into large bowls, top with cheese, sprinkle with sage.