Venetian suckling veal liver

This recipe comes from the L’Apicio moderno, a recipe book written by Francesco Leonardi in 1790. Casanova was aware of the sublime art of using food and recipes for seduction, and this dish, typical of his city, is not a lessening example of Casanova’s image.

  • Time

    35 minutes

  • Difficulty


  • Course

    Second Courses

  • Italian Region



Servings 4

  • 1 lb veal liver, cleaned and finely sliced
  • 1 lb onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 ¾ oz extra virgin olive oil
  • white wine to taste
  • 1 oz butter
  • meat broth to taste
  • salt and pepper to taste


20 minutes preparation + 15 minutes cooking

Gently simmer the oil, butter, onions and a drop of broth in a casserole dish. Add the liver, sprinkle with wine and cook at a high heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

In Leonardi’s recipe, once cooked, a handful of chopped parsley was added along with a few tablespoons of the gravy and lots of lemon juice - these last ingredients can be left out of the modern version. Serve the liver with a soft polenta.

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