Sliced Beans with Chicken Livers, Chinese Style

(Photo by FotoosVanRobin/Flickr)

Serves 2-3.


150 g/5 oz fresh green beans
125 g/4 oz chicken livers
1 tablespoon oil
4 thin slices fresh ginger
1 large clove garlic, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon sesame oil
125 ml/4fl oz/1/2 cup stock or water
1 teaspoon cornflour (cornstarch)


Top and tail the beans and cut them in thin diagonal slices. They should measure about 2 cups in volume. Put the chicken livers in a small saucepan with just enough salted water to cover. Bring to the boil and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Cool for a few minutes, then drain and slice just as thinly as the beans - about 6 mm (1/4 in).

In a wok heat the oil and on low heat fry sliced ginger and garlic for a minute or so, then add beans and toss in the oil. Add soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil and stock. Cover and cook for about 4 minutes. Add sliced chicken livers, pushing them down into the liquid. Cover and simmer a further 2 or 3 minutes or until beans are tender but still crisp. Meanwhile, mix cornflour with a tablespoon of cold water. Push beans and liver slices to side of wok and stir cornflour mixture into the liquid until it boils and thickens. Serve with steamed rice.

Recipe excerpted from Encyclopedia of Asian Food by Charmaine Solomon (Periplus Editions, 1998)