Kidneys and rice… offally good!

You might have noticed, if you have read anything here before, that I am very fond of cooking the cheaper and often forgotten cuts of meat because they can, if treated well, turn into the most delicious meals. The same with offal.

When I was a schoolgirl I was forced to eat dry, rubbery liver and bouncingly hard kidneys and I swore that when I grew up I would NEVER be made to eat them again… until I cooked them myself and realised that offal wasn’t awful at all.

Now, one of my favourite quick suppers (only when the Bear is away….. he’s still rather stubborn when it comes to kidneys, but I have no doubt with training he’ll get there) is kidneys in a cream sauce on basmati rice.

Kidneys are so cheap – I think that pile of beauties cost me less than a £1 – and all you need otherwise is some basmati rice (a cup full) a few spring onions, some butter, cream and a dash of something alcoholic and either some flour to thicken the cream sauce, or, like I did tonight, some thickening granules. Now, I would normally avoid produced goods and shortcuts like this, but they really are rather good. They USED to say they were gluten free, which made them a great option if I was doing something for my brother…now I think they have to say that the product is made in a factory that also produces products containing gluten. Anyway… that’s why I started using them and I still use them today. The granules are just stirred in to whatever you are cooking and they thicken… It’s an option, isn’t it?

So, let’s start.

You need to remove the centre core and the tubules from the middle of the kidney. It’s easy enough to do – just slice them in half and then snip out the white core and tubes with scissors.

Chop the spring onions into pieces and add them to a pan with a spoonful of butter and a dash of oil (this stops the butter burning too quickly)

I used my favourite chilli infused oil just to give the dish a hint of a bite.

Cooking takes just a few minutes – you’ll be able to tell because the kidneys go from fresh. bright red to a rich brown.

In the meantime, I put a cup of basmati rice in a pan, add a cup and just under a half cup  of water, a pinch of salt and set it away to boil. Basmati only takes a few minutes to cook and doing it this way means there’s no need to drain it. If you cover it with a teatowel and put the lid on after the water has been absorbed, then the excess moisture is absorbed and you are left with fluffy, dry rice.

When the kidneys have just cooked, I like to add a dash of something alcoholic to perk up the final dish. If you are cooking this for children then you don’t have to add it… though I have to say, any alcohol will be cooked off, so it shouldn’t affect them.  Tonight, I am using port.

Why port? Well, there’s a bottle open and also I think the sweetness will combine well with the musky tang of the kidneys. Sometimes I use brandy, or whisky. I’m tired tonight and i think I might fancy a touch of sweetness in there, so port it is.

Then, a sprinkle of thickening granules, stirred in

And, because I have some in the fridge and it needs finishing off, I add a spoonful or so of cream

And that’s it.

Just stir the cream round, taste for seasoning – maybe a pinch of salt or a grating of pepper and then pour it over your lovely, fluffy rice.

Supper in less than 20 minutes.

Comforting, rich and smooth. Gently cooked kidneys (no rubbery, bitter bounce here!) in a delicious, creamy sauce on fluffy rice.  Just what you need to brighten a lonely evening.

11 thoughts on “Kidneys and rice… offally good!”

  1. I’m sure this is very nice, but I’m with the Bear on the whole kidney thing. I think it’s the texture that just turns me off. I love lambs liver but my DH wont touch it. In fact, there are very few things I wont eat, kidneys and cod’s roe and I would only eat tongue if there was nothing else.

    When I was an au pair in Belgium I did have to eat ‘rognons’ (kidneys), I forced the meal down, but still didn’t enjoy it.

    Never seen those thickening granules before, must look out for them.

  2. I’m sorry Wendy, but you aren’t convincing me with this one, I am afraid I still think offal is awful. I just can’t bear to do it. Sorry, sorry, sorry.

  3. Well, I used to think that… but, cooked like this, these little kidneys are gorgeous.
    There must be someone who would quite fancy a bowl?

  4. Soz Wendy – have to agree with the others, and I’d never get N to try!
    I have to say though – I can’t eat liver, but I adore chicken liver pate. Especially when I make it, and it is still warm…
    Maybe it is just the texture then?

  5. Texture, possibly, Angela. Kidneys.. like we were fed in steak and kidney pie – all bitter and rubbery – well, that I would refuse to eat, but these are tender and tasty. The only thing I can do is offer to cook them for you all and see if that changes your minds! If you get here, any of you, I’ll cook them!

  6. i cook kidney and i luv it cuz it taste good, oh my goodness, it is so good, i do it different than most people but everyone have their preference

  7. Hey Tedriena, you must tell us how you cook kidneys! The more great kidney recipes there are, the better!

  8. My mum cooks kidneys a little bit differently and she fills a kitchen with it and puts it in the oven with potatoes! But yours looks very nice I’ll try to make it maybe sometime.

  9. One of my favorite dishes growing up, I’m going to make this for my wife. Do you happen to have a recipe for Oxtail Stew? another one of my favs!

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