Tangerine chicken liver

8:00 AM

stir fried chicken livers with tangerine wedges and sesame seeds
Oranges are in season in India right now, and along with them a world of culinary possibilities. But, wait! Oranges? Didn't this recipe say something about tangerines?

This is because what we call oranges in India is in fact NOT an orange. It is far closer to tangerine in size, feel and taste. These oranges also go by the name of Nagpur oranges and they might be the fruit you would overlook at the market if you aren't familiar with them
Their skin might not always look appealing, it's puffy, battered at times, and the hint of green on some might even trick you into thinking they aren't ripe. As an expat freshly arrived to India you could easily ignore them for not looking the part. Truth is, you will be missing on something good ignoring them.
If you grew up in Europe, you probably have sweet memories of peeling tangerines and clementines during the Winter months (and placing the fresh peels on the radiator to perfume the room). These less than picture perfect "oranges" will bring you right back there, and they will soon be the thing you will wait for all year round in India (along with Mangoes)

So now that I pretty much clarified that the Indian orange is actually almost the same as a tangerine, we can go back to the original intent of this blog post : a Chicken recipe
This can't get any more seasonal over here: the gamy taste of liver paired with the sweet goodness of an Indian Winter fruit. The kind of dish you will ONLY be able to cook during the orange/tangerine season in the country!
What's more, it is a quick and super easy dish to pull, we are talking less than 10 minutes folks! Chances are the rice you can serve it with will take more time to cook than this dish, that is how awesome this is.

My recipe serves 2 decent portions, or 3 small ones. You can easily double the quantity if needed:


200g of Chicken livers
1 tangerine/Nagpur orange
2-3 table spoon peanut oil (this gives a far better taste than generic vegetable oil)
2-3 sprigs of spring onions (scallions) chopped
1 tsp of each black and white sesame seeds
a handful of chopped coriander leaves (cilantro)
salt to taste

How to:

1) Wash and chop you livers into bite size chunks while you heat the peanut oil in a wok/kadai

2) Once the oil is hot toss in your liver and sear, stir regularly and cook for about 3-4 minutes, they should be just done in the middle and have some golden brown streaks on the outside.

3) Add the tangerine wedges, sesame seeds and spring onion and stir for a minute. The tangerine wedges will cook very quickly, you want them to be soft but not mushy. Turn of the heat and transfer to a serving dish immediately (do not leave it in the pan, it will dry the chicken).

4) Add the coriander leaves to it and serve hot.

It goes really well with rice and a side of vegetables, or vegetable stir fry noodles. 

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  1. Poppy8:37 AM

    I'll have to try this! Thanks, Cyn.

  2. Hm, difficult to imagine the taste, but sounds interesting. Affordable and quick - I'll definitely try it :) Thanks for sharing.

    1. Let me know what you think about the taste once you tried it :-)

  3. I have seen proper Valencia type oranges from Nagpur at markets in Delhi & Kathmandu, however they're a bit mushy & flavorless compared to the Valencia oranges grown in my native California.

    Those tasty tangerines/clementines grow in the warmer valleys here in Nepal also. (People think Nepal is all glaciers & mountain tops, but most Nepalis live in these sub tropical valleys- bananas, avocados, papayas, lychees, coffee grow well here too.)

    Hmmm...for those of us who don't care for the taste of liver I would think chopped pieces of boneless, skinless chicken breast would work well in this recipe also.
    Looks great!

    1. I never really liked Valencia type of oranges. Tangerines and clementines were the one I would wait for as a kid, and they are still the ones I look forward to see back on stalls here. The first few years I kept away from them in India because they were labelled as oranges. I don't remember how I came to find out they weren't the oranges I don't like.

    2. You don't see Valencias very often at markets in the US anymore either. We had a huge tree at my childhood in California - but citrus is no longer profitable to grow in California commercially due to the water shortage.
      Tangelos, Minneolas, & honeybells grown in Florida are the popular citrus fruits for eating out of hand in the US.
      Saw this & thought of you, aren't they gorgeous?

    3. These jar candles are so cute! I can totally see myself making some of these one of these days.

  4. Anonymous3:23 PM

    Oh this is totally different from the Chinese classic. Where roast/steamed chicken is served with an orange/tangerine glaze or batter fried chicken coated in tangerine sauce. But most of the recipes out there for it are rather vague. This looks simple enough and delicious. Will try it out.

    1. Yes it is more a fusion type dish. The orange glaze that goes with the Chinese roast chicken is made by mixing orange juice with the fat and fluids the chicken lost during the roasting process. A technique you also find in continental cooking where the "cooking juice" is used as a base for a sauce.

      This chicken liver dish is a dry dish though, goes well with noodles, rice and even on a leafy salad (I tried all three combination)

  5. I am a Vegeterian, but love oranges Cynthia. Photos made this recipe tempting to taste :-)

    1. There might be a vegetarian combination that could taste good with oranges. I know I like them in a big bowl of green leafy lettuce. And now I wonder how it would go with grilled paneer or tofu...hmmm


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