Erez's Chopped Liver
This version of chopped liver will give you a clue why Erez Komarovsky is my favorite Israeli chef. In his version of this Jewish classic, he replaces fried onions with oodles of slowly sautéed leeks, chops livers with a knife (or crushes them with a mortar and pestle) and serves the dish with spicy beet chutney.
Ingredients (serves 12)
1 kg (2 lb 4 oz) fresh clean chicken livers
3/4 cup fruity olive oil
5-6 large leeks (white and the green parts) thinly sliced
1 tablespoon whole white peppercorns
1 tablespoon whole green peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon whole mustard seeds
coarse sea salt
Heat 1/2 cup olive oil in a large skillet or a wide shallow pan and gently sauté the leeks uncovered for half an hour and they are very soft, making sure they don't brown
Crush peppercorns, cumin and mustard seeds with a mortar and pestle or in a coffee/spice grinder.
Brush livers with a little oil and coat them with spices.
Thoroughly heat a heavy iron cast skillet and brown the livers 2-3 minutes on each side, be careful not overcook them.
Chop the livers with a large heavy knife, mix with leeks and serve promptly with beet chutney.
photo: Daniel Laila