“What Am I, Chopped Liver?” Chopped Liver

Granted, I’ve only been in the online dating game less than a month, but I just got back from my worst online-dating-date ever.

Oh, yes. Newsflash, kittens: I’m out cruising in cyberspace. I’m very 21st century.

I didn’t plan on blogging any of my dating escapades, and I don’t intend to in the future, but this was so ridiculous that I had to share.

So far online dating has been pretty pleasant. I’ve been on a bunch of dates and every single one has been a mostly positive experience. The men have been polite, personable, not bad-looking, and at least somewhat interesting–all good things. So that brings us to Rodney.

As I drove up the street I saw him standing on the curb before I stopped my car. He was a schlub. I immediately thought “eh, no.” But, in an attempt to be more positive (that’s super hard for me, guys!) and not a slave to first impressions, I stopped the car and told him to get in.

Rodney was a sour little troll as soon as I picked him up. He complained about the 19 and 20-year-old dubstep kids. Aging hipsters. The out-of-staters who go to University of Maryland, College Park. The woman from West Virginia who is “stalking” him. The bar bros who laugh at him. His former neighbor who “spread horrible rumors about him.”

Negative, paranoid little fucker, this dude.

And he calls Pittsburgh P.G.H. Like, spelled out: Pee. Gee. Aych. And University of Pittsburgh U Pitt. And CMU Mellon. Here’s an abbreviation for you, Rodney:

WTFST? As in Who The Fuck Says That?

But Rodney did clue me in on all the best parks in Baltimore in which to do public drinking undetected by the authorities, so that’s something.

Oh yeah, I just went there.

But the pièce de résistance was, while eating sub-par tacos at Elvis (I wanted this joint to be AWESOME), he asked how I made it down to Baltimore. And my answer is this simple: I couldn’t get a job in Pittsburgh. My ex, who had just moved to Baltimore for a job, suggested I expand my job search to Charm City. Which I did. And then I found a job. And moved in with him. 

And that just totally made me think of this:

So Rodney starts asking questions. A lot of questions. And a little detail here (my ex’s initial job), one other little detail (his current job) and one more (no, he’s in the same neighborhood but now lives on this street), Rodney realizes that he knows exactly who my ex-boyfriend is (oh, Smalltimore!). But then he tells me they’ve hung out multiple times and that he’s met his live-in girlfriend (which, good for her. She had to get out of her parents’ basement somehow).

But then Rodney spent the remainder of our time at Elvis’ taco spot discussing political campaigns. And Cleve. My two absolute favorite subjects. So, you’ve worked on political campaigns? Do you know any Ron Paul people? Which ones are you going to be on this election year? How old is Cleve? He has a really great mustache. I hear he’s a Mason. He wanted me to join. Is he really an Indians fan? So, he’s going to law school? It’s a shame he moved out. 

I am not shitting you, gentle readers.

I shoveled my dinner as quickly as I could. The “date” lasted about 70 minutes. Total. That includes driving. During rush hour. And parking. I drove. I paid the meter. I bought my own tacos and soda. And in return I was regaled with comments on what a great, nice, solid guy my ex-boyfriend is and stories about Baltimore City political races.  It was a fucking stellar hour or so of my life that I will never get back.

Anyway, this is a cooking blog. So now for a dish.

“What Am I, Chopped Liver?” Chopped Liver

Every once in a while I get a hankering for chopped liver. It’s a weird craving, for sure, and one that’s hard for me to satisfy because all the places in Baltimore that make it are all out of the way joints. So I did the next best thing and made my own.

So for this dish I combined chopped liver recipes from two different cookbooks:

Secret Ingredients by the Jewish Community Center of Harrison, NYC ©1977 and Cook’s Choice by the Brandeis University National Women’s Committee ©1967

As I’ve mentioned before, I love community cookbooks where the dishes are attributed to particular people. I used Secret Ingredients’ Bebe Prince’s version and the recipe from Mrs. Alvin Meadow as it appears in Cook’s Choice.

I don’t feel like typing out both recipes, so I’m just giving you the synthesized version–what I actually made.

  • 1/2 pound chicken livers
  • 3 hard boiled eggs
  • 1 large onion
  • oil
  • margarine
  • 1/8 cup cognac
  • thyme
  • salt
  • pepper
I sauteed the onion in some vegetable oil. Removed it. Then sauteed the chicken livers in some margarine. Combined the cooked onion and livers with the thyme, salt, pepper, and cognac in a bowl and went mad crazy with my trusty immersion blender. Chopped 2 of the hard boiled eggs finely and folded it into the liver mixture with a spatula. Chilled it.

The 3rd egg I sliced for garnish.

I thought it was OK. It satisfied my craving. It was a little dry. There should’ve been more moisture in there somewhere. More cognac? I didn’t pour the fat into the mixture to blend it. Did it need more fat? The chopped liver I am used to is oddly sweet and I didn’t achieve that. I don’t know what was missing, but I didn’t want to dump sugar in, ya know? That seemed wrong.

My friend Evan popped by the house the night I made this and this is the plate I had to offer:

I am a firm believer that presentation makes anything taste better.

Evan’s verdict was that, although it was not as good as his Grandma Hershman’s, it was still passable. So in my mind,

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21 Responses to “What Am I, Chopped Liver?” Chopped Liver

  1. Mel says:

    I am very sorry for your bad date. Rest assured it’s provided you with a hilarious and classic “bad date” story that you can tell for years to come!

  2. Godzilaw says:

    Wow. Worst. Date. Ever! That story would win a contest!

  3. Jill says:

    Can you hear my groans all the way from Pittsburgh? Awful. Terrible. I can’t imagine a worse date.

  4. Leah says:

    Oh dates! This is what makes for great stories! Perhaps this is preparing you for a stand up tour? What do you say!? Just two ladies and a microphone!

  5. Bernie says:

    I feel like I need a drink after reading this…

  6. What are the freaking odds? Seriously.

  7. veg-o-matic says:

    ” (which, good for her. She had to get out of her parents’ basement somehow).” is now my favorite Emily quote.
    I’ve never had chopped liver in my life (because it’s–ew–liver), but I’m guessing you needed a little schmaltz to moisten things up.

  8. UGH dating. It’s hard enough without the Rodney’s of the world. Not on the scene myself but trying to help my daughter figure out how to meet people. So far we’ve stayed clear of the online scene but it’s probably time to Risk a Rodney and give it a go. Loved today’s post.

  9. Rodneys – I do know how to use apostrophes. I just don’t seem to know how to catch their misuse before hitting send.

  10. Erin says:

    Holy crap. That definitely rivals my worst date ever too… I may have the edge because my date brought up my dead father and wouldn’t shut up about it. But your date really knew how to rub salt into a wound and sounds like a…are there words for it? But now you have a bad dating story you can tell forever and will probably always win the “worst date ever” contest when comparing stories. And that, my friend, is a win. Also, is Rodney is REAL name?

  11. Crafitiute says:

    Good Lord, lovely. That… I… I don’t know. I just don’t know. But I do agree that should Cosmo or Women’s Day or some similar magazine have a worst date ever contest you might find yourself $500 richer.

    This makes me what to buy you a drink, thats for sure.

  12. I don’t have a bad date story that even comes close to this one! I’m sending you a virtual hug (and a cocktail). The upside? Your pain, my pleasure. You totally cracked me up.

    I really like chicken livers and I’d have to agree with veg-o-matic. Schmaltz would definitely help. If you’re not worried about it being kosher, butter works wonders with liver.

  13. fifilaru says:

    Your chopped liver needs schmaltz. Your date, well I donʻt know what he needs, but ewww

  14. Pingback: Beverage Bonus: Boilermaker | Dinner is Served 1972

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