Monday, April 4, 2011

What am I? Chopped Liver.

OK!'s been a wild ride, sometimes life just really bitch slaps you around and all you can do is stop, take stock and start over. So, newly single, 50 pounds lighter and we won't even talk about the emotional baggage dumped...let's get back to some fun! (And yes, I still start every post with "OK!", it's a good way to approach most things in life.)

So, today I'm talking about something most people consider gross, something I grew up with and it's a comfort food, and damn, could it BE more appropriate?

Chopped Liver. Specifically, Chopped Chicken Liver. Mmmm, so good. This is how my grandmother taught me to make it when I was just a little kid. It's also the BEST damned chopped liver you will EVER eat!

Firstly, you need schmaltz. What is schmaltz? Chicken fat. I always have a jar of bacon fat and chicken fat in my fridge. It's too flavorful to waste, too deathly bad to use a lot, but is short, live a little. Schmaltz is easy to make, just render some chicken skin. When I have chicken thighs, cut off all that extra skin and throw it in a saute pan. Cook it down until the skin is all browned and crackly and drain off the fat into a jar. Keep it in the freezer so it lasts longer. And with schmaltz in hand, we're ready to begin!

Please, do NOT use Criso or another fat for this. It just will NOT turn out right, or with the depth of flavor the chicken fat adds.

2 Tbls Schmaltz
1 Container Chicken Livers
2 small Onions, rough chopped
2 hard boiled Eggs
salt and pepper to taste

How easy is that? Now, open your livers and throw them in a colander. Do not wash them, but allow the bulk of the blood and liquid to drain off.

Heat your schmaltz in a large saute pan. When melted, toss in the livers and one of the chopped onions. As they cook, the livers will release liquid. Cook until the livers are firm and almost all the liquid has evaporated.

This will take about 10 minutes. About halfway through, season with salt and pepper.
Do not salt too early,
it will make the livers dry. Add the salt when the liquid is beginning to reduce.

Run the cooked liver and onions through a meat grinder (or pulse as little as possible in a food processor) with the remaining raw onion and the two hard boiled eggs. Taste for salt and pepper, season as desired and set it in the fridge to chill. It will firm up as it cools.
Now...EAT IT! On crackers, on toast...just with a spoon...try it. You'll like it! Seriously. This is some good Jewish eats here, folks!