Author Notes: The poor, unloved chicken gizzard is in desperate need of some good PR. I think the problem is with its name: just the sound of it turns most people off. Maybe like sweetbreads and rognons, we need another word to make it sound more palatable. Like maybe "tendernuggets"?
People in other cultures don't seem to have the same aversion to gizzards. For many, these organs aren't the part you throw away, but a delicious treat to be savored. One of my favorite ways to prepare them is in the Portuguese style which is full of spice and flavor. The gizzards are braised low and slow until they're so tender you could mistake it for pork. My version veers away from the traditional a bit, but it's delicious enough that I think I can be forgiven. This is just the kind of dish that could change minds about gizzards... I mean, "tendernuggets". —vrunka
- 1 pound chicken gizzard
- 4 slices bacon
- 1 small onion, minced
- 4 stalks celery, minced
- 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 poblano pepper, seeded and minced
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 teaspoons crushed red chili pepper (preferably piri-piri)
- 1-1/2 cups tomatoes, canned or fresh, chopped finely
- 1 quart chicken broth
- 12 ounces beer (nothing too dark)
- 1/2 cup red wine
- 1/4 cup white vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 4-6 dry bay leaves
- parsley sprigs for garnish
- Chop each chicken gizzard into 4 pieces. Set aside.
- In a large Dutch oven of at least 3 quarts, fry the bacon slices over medium heat until the fat has rendered out. Remove them from the pot and set aside.
- In the bacon fat, saute the onion for about 8 minutes until onions start to turn golden brown. Raise heat to medium high and add celery, carrots, pepper and garlic. Saute for 2 minutes more then add oregano, thyme and red chili flakes.
- Stir in tomatoes and let them brown slightly on the bottom by letting them sit for about a minute, then scrape the bottom and let them sit again. Do this about 3 or 4 times.
- Stir in chicken broth, beer, wine, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce and bay leaves. Add gizzards. Let the mixture come up just to a boil. Try not to let it come up to a rolling boil or else your gizzards will toughen up. Immediately reduce heat to low and cover.
- Let simmer for 2-1/2-3 hours, stirring occasionally. Check in periodically to make sure that all the gizzards are submerged and that the mixture is not boiling.
- When the meat is very tender, serve the stew in individual bowls topped with crumbled bacon and parsley.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Nose to Tail Recipe