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Old Country Chopped Liver




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Old Country Chopped Liver
(Gehockte Leber)

Epicurious November 1995
by Robert Steinberg
Yiddish Cuisine


"This forspeis is so simple and straightforward that it is underappreciated as
the gourmet dish it really is. My general rules for making chopped liver are:

1. Use only chicken liver to make this dish. Do not use beef or calf liver.
Their flavors are too strong.
2. Use schmaltz*. Do not substitute oil or any other fat. If you are concerned
about cholesterol, eat chopped liver less often, but eat the uncompromised
version. Anyway, the amount of schmaltz per portion of chopped liver in
this recipe is the equivalent of no more than one pat of butter.
3. Chop all the ingredients by hand rather than by machine. Chopped liver
should not look like a puree or a pâté. In texture it resembles French
pate du campagne or the Quebecois rillets du gran'mčre, coarse
and rustic.
4. Eat it in small portions -  it is very rich -  and make it only for special
occasions. Then you eat it less often and enjoy it more when you do."

1 pound chicken livers
(fresh, not previously frozen)
2 cups finely chopped onions
3 hard-boiled eggs
6 tablespoons schmaltz*
Salt and black pepper to taste
A few gribenes [cracklings] (optional)

A rendered chicken fat (sometimes flavored with onions, apples
and seasonings) that is strained and used in many dishes of Middle
European Jewish origin much like butter — both in cooking and
as a spread for bread."

© Copyright Barron's Educational Services, Inc. 1995 based on
New Food Lover’s Companion, 2nd edition, by Sharon Tyler Herbst.

Preheat broiler to 500 degrees F. Broil livers on broiler rack 4 inches
from the heat source for 3 minutes on each side. Remove from the oven
and finely chop livers.
Melt 6 tablespoons schmaltz in skillet and sauté onions over medium/low
heat until soft and just beginning to brown. Add chopped liver pieces and
sauté 1 minute more. Remove from heat.
Pour contents of skillet into a mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, chop the
eggs and add them to the liver mixture. Mix in the salt, pepper, and the
(if using). Mix everything together until well blended. Chill at
least 3 hours in the refrigerator before serving.

Serving Suggestions:
Serve small portions of chopped liver garnished with kosher dill pickles
and pickled beet slices during the winter. Garnish the liver with fresh
tomato and English cucumber slices in the summer.

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