As kids, neither of us were jumping for chopped liver. Liver always seemed foreign and unappealing—until that glorious day where our palates grew up, and our eyes opened to the deliciousness that is chopped liver. Liver has such an unmistakable irony, deep flavor that each time we eat it, we’re instantly transported to memories of tradition—singing songs at the Seder table, looking for the Afikomen, being surrounded by friends and family. It’s amazing… one bite, close your eyes, and boom, you’re there. You’re sitting at that childhood Seder table surrounded by loved ones both present and now gone. We’ve cherished these memories individually with our respective families, and now, we get to share in new ones together. This chopped liver being one of them. Something we will remember in the future, looking back on today…one bite, eyes closed, and boom, we’re back.
This chopped liver recipe doesn’t need to be saved for only Passover. It’s appropriate for any holiday, or really, any Sunday brunch with bagels and schmear. It’s delicious, traditional, and transcendent. Take one bite, and see where you’re taken back to.
Serving: 1 lb chopped liver
1 egg, hard boiled
4 tbs duck fat, divided (it’s traditionally schmaltz, rendered chicken fat, but we couldn’t find it, and the duck fat created the same unctuousness)
1 tbs butter
1/2 small onion, chopped
1 lb chicken livers, cleaned
salt and pepper
1 tbs mayonnaise
parsley, as an optional garnish
Hard boil the egg. We feel, after many years of trial and error, that we’ve found the best way to hard-boil an egg. Using the tip of a small knife, poke a small hole in the “flat bottom” of the egg. This allows for steam to surround the membrane around the egg which makes peeling the egg SO EASY. Put the egg in a small pot with enough water to cover. Put the pot over high heat and bring to a boil. After the water begins to boil, cover the pot with a fitted lid, turn the heat off, and set aside for 13 minutes. After 13 minutes, take the egg out of the water, and place in a bowl filled with ice and water. Let the egg cool in the ice bath for a few minutes. Then, using the back of a spoon, smash the shell around the egg. Start at the bottom of the egg, where you punctured a hole, and peel the shell off. It should come off without breaking any of the white. Chop the egg and set aside.
Cook the livers. Heat the butter and 2 tbs of the duck fat in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions, and sauté until the onions are slightly browned. Salt and pepper both sides of the livers and add them to the hot skillet. Cook the livers until they are just barely pink inside, about 10 minutes. Allow them to cool for a little, and then place the entire mixture in a food processor.
In the food processor, add the other 2 tbs of duck fat, the chopped egg, and mayonnaise, and pulse until smooth. Everyone has their idea of the right consistency for chopped liver based on their personal preferences. We like it smooth, but not totally silken. Salt and pepper to taste.
Put the chopped liver in a container and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, overnight is best!
Garnish with parsley and serve with matzo!