Fegato alla Marsala

Calves’ Liver with Marsala

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Preparation info

  • 4

    • Difficulty


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Alastair Little's Italian Kitchen

Alastair Little's Italian Kitchen

By Alastair Little

Published 1996

  • About

A Sicilian calves’ liver dish using the sweet wine from the island, but with a heretical addition of a little good-quality red wine vinegar to balance its sweetness.


  • 500 g calves’ liver in 4 good slices, trimmed and skinned
  • a little good olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 6 tbsp Marsala wine
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 35 g butter


Heat a frying pan big enough to hold the liver in one layer over a medium flame. Add a little olive oil, season the liver and cook on one side for 3 minutes. Turn and give the other side 2 minutes. You may not have a frying pan large enough to hold the liver in one go, in which case cook in two batches keeping the first warm in a 110°C/225°/F/Gas ¼ oven. Wipe the pan after the first batch, and add more oil. (Saves washing-up!)

Remove the liver from the pan and transfer to a warm serving plate. Add the Marsala and vinegar to the pan, turn up the flame and boil down until syrupy. At this point add the butter in pieces, off the heat, then shake the pan until the butter is incorporated into the sauce. Pour over the liver and serve. The whole process of making the sauce should only take a minute or so.

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