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22 June 2009

Gribenes

I've never eaten pork scratchings and have long wondered why I've heard so many people speak about them akin to an orgasm.  What is so appealing about a bit of deep fried, hairy pig skin.

And then I made schmaltz and discovered that sitting within the boiling vat of fat was some deep fried chicken skin.  And lo, I ate in wonderment and amazement at these brown scraps in front of me.

Food doesn't get much unhealthier, nor does it get much better.

I have seen recipes that recommend adding onions, which I imagine would make it very good indeed but when I made them, admittedly by accident, there wasn't any onion.

Similarly I've seen recipes recommending you add salt.  If you're using kosher chickens I really don't think it's necessary and would make them too salty.  Kosher chickens are salted as part of the koshering process and until I made gribenes I hadn't appreciated just how much salt is retained in the skin - but it is tasty:

  • 250g chicken fat
  • As much chicken skin as desired

Put the skin into the pan as you are rendering it down for shmaltz.

Once the schmaltz is ready so are the chicken skins.  Dab on kitchen roll to get rid of excess fat and eat immediately.

I strongly advise you don't bother sharing these with others.  You've worked hard, you deserve it.  They don't.

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Didn't know my guilty secret had a name. I rend the skin from chicken till it's crispy then - if I don't eat the lot immediately - add it as a crispy topping to things like risotto or noodle soups, anything made with chicken stock as a base.


Bron, glad to have been of assistance! Enjoy

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