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Feeling Schmaltzy


joey madison
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I've cooked many times before using bacon fat or duck fat and have really enjoyed the results.

In the past, I've always tossed the chicken fat that's rendered from various dishes I've cooked (or it ended up in a pan sauce or something).

Last night, I decided to save it. So, now I need suggestions as to what would be the best way to use it. Any ideas? Thanks!

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I have only recently tipped to the idea of saving chicken fat, typically the stuff that I take off of chilled chicken stock. I have only used it to sizzle grated or finely diced potatoes and the scrambled eggs to go with. I am thinking that vegetable gratins would be another use.

Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

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I'm not sure I understand your question, hillvalley. Are you asking how long schmaltz lasts in the refrig? (I'm not sure about the answer....someone else chime in?)

I usually use it whilst making chicken soup. Also great in mashed potatoes and in making fried onions, come to think of it.

Soba

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I'm not sure I understand your question, hillvalley.  Are you asking how long schmaltz lasts in the refrig?  (I'm not sure about the answer....someone else chime in?)

Soba

Sorry about that. Yes, I meant when it is kept in the fridge. While cleaning mine out yesterday I found a container of soup shmaltz that is about 7 weeks old. I'm not in a daring mood so I haven't tried cooking with it.

Do I get to have a shallot omlette cooked in shmaltz for dinner or do I need to make another pot of stock this weekend?

True Heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic.

It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost,

but the urge to serve others at whatever cost. -Arthur Ashe

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Garden of Eden Markets, here in NYC sell schmaltz in their refrigerated sections. I'm not sure how the product tastes or if it's pasteurized in the same way as supermarket lard is, these days.

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Probably best if you make more schmaltz tomorrow.

Schmaltz is just rendered chicken fat (with onions). Unless it has some sort of preserving agent such as sufficient quantities of salt or acid, it probably is a good idea to throw the seven week old batch out and start fresh. Wouldn't want food poisoning to occur.

'Course I could be wrong.

A google search turned up no clues btw.

Soba

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I also find that it helps to cook down the schmaltz removed from soup, roasts, etc. It has a lot of water in it (more than some other skimmed fats) which can allow it to develop mildew or mold. Think of it as "clarifying" the fat as one does with butter. Once you clarify it, it can last for months in the fridge.

Of course, I grew up in a household where the globs of fat pulled out of chickens were roughly chopped and cooked with minimally-cut onions in water, until the water had all evaporated, the onions were deep brown, and any bits of skin and other flesh had turned into wonderful, crunchy greven (gribenes to some :biggrin: ). The only way to deal with greven is to hide them until they are cooled, and then scarf them down. :laugh: Some people add them to chopped liver, but I view them as the cook's own treat.

As for uses of chicken fat: what, you don't know how to cook???? :wink: But of course, it is the only shortening to be used in knaidlach.

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I also find that it helps to cook down the schmaltz removed from soup, roasts, etc. It has a lot of water in it (more than some other skimmed fats) which can allow it to develop mildew or mold. Think of it as "clarifying" the fat as one does with butter. Once you clarify it, it can last for months in the fridge.

Duh... I should have known that. Great tip. The analogy to clarifying butter is really helpful. That will definitely be the technique I use when I make my next batch of stock.

Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

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Actually there is a tradition which pretty much suggested that latkes ought to be fried in goose fat, which was available from a goose prepared for the holidays.

and then I happened upon

this piece of wisdom :biggrin:

Shmaltz is delicious and lends a light and nutty note wherever it's used. (Do not worry about your health. It turns out that chicken fat is actually not that bad as animal fats go. It's less than one third saturated fat, and almost one half monounsaturated. If you cut it with sunflower oil, another traditional Eastern European cooking fat, your cholesterol conscience will be clean.:
:hmmm:

Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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This year, I'm thinking of trying latkes fried in duck fat. :wub:

For the good of all eg'ers I volunteer myself to be a test taster :wink:

True Heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic.

It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost,

but the urge to serve others at whatever cost. -Arthur Ashe

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I can't believe nobody has suggested latkes. Latke eating season isn't that far off, you know!

I didn't know that there was a time when latkes were out of season. :unsure:

Tobin

It is all about respect; for the ingredient, for the process, for each other, for the profession.

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  • 3 weeks later...
I also find that it helps to cook down the schmaltz removed from soup, roasts, etc. It has a lot of water in it (more than some other skimmed fats) which can allow it to develop mildew or mold. Think of it as "clarifying" the fat as one does with butter. Once you clarify it, it can last for months in the fridge.

Duh... I should have known that. Great tip. The analogy to clarifying butter is really helpful. That will definitely be the technique I use when I make my next batch of stock.

Made another batch last night and hope to render the fat tomorrow since I am going to be at home "sick".

The problem is, other than melting it down in a pot, I am not sure what else to do. Should I bring it to a boil or just let is simmer? How will I know when all the water is gone? What else do I need to know?

True Heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic.

It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost,

but the urge to serve others at whatever cost. -Arthur Ashe

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The problem is, other than melting it down in a pot, I am not sure what else to do.  Should I bring it to a boil or just let is simmer?  How will I know when all the water is gone?  What else do I need to know?

This thread on duck fat is from the forum of my man Daniel Rogov

- hope it helps!

Amy

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I don't eat a lot of traditional ashkenazi jewish dishes, but one of my favorites is egg barley and caramelized onions and mushrooms. Egg barley is pasta product. You toast it in schmaltz and then add chicken broth and cook until all the broth is absorbed. Then, melt more schmaltz in a saute pan and add some onion. Cook until golden, then add some sliced button mushrooms and continue cooking until they're tender. Stir in the egg barley and season to taste.

"Some people see a sheet of seaweed and want to be wrapped in it. I want to see it around a piece of fish."-- William Grimes

"People are bastard-coated bastards, with bastard filling." - Dr. Cox on Scrubs

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up in north-central pennsylvania where my parents grew up, they have a meal called chicken and biscuits. they also eat chicken and waffles. in both cases, the 'chicken' in the recipe name is a thickish chicken gravy, basically thickened chicken soup, made from the whole bird or at least a meaty carcass.

(btw the waffles are like belgian waffles, but not sweet)

anyway, replacing a good portion of the shortening in the biscuits with the chicken fat skimmed from the soup (you made it the night before, didn't you?) makes the BEST biscuits for this purpose.

edited for clarity.

Edited by mrbigjas (log)
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