A few weeks ago Amiee and I went to learn how to butcher a lamb. It was fun and we learned a great deal about breaking down whole quadrupeds. But on a more immediate level we got to try some of Ryan Farr’s chicharrones. Now there is a Jewish version of this, gribenes. I have made them before, usually a result of using chicken thighs for something where the skins weren’t needed and I would slowly render them down and feed them to the kids (my son calls them “chicken chips”). But recently I was breaking down a whole chicken for sausages (post on the way) and I thought that I would try to remove the skin in one go and then render that down. The results were astounding, so I am sharing the results here. By the way, its kosher for passover and you get about a half a cup of nice clean fat (schmatlz) to boot.
One chicken skin (that’s it, is a pretty simple dish)
Salt and pepper to taste
Remove the skin from a whole chicken. Start by slicing open a line along the back bone and then cutting through the fat there until you can work the skin up. Continue pulling the skin up gently from around the legs and wings (these can be tricky- you might need to cut these your first time) and then remove the skin from the breast last. Place the skin in a large pan and heat to medium low. Let it cook gently, flipping from time to time until it has reduced to about half its size and taken on a deep tan color. Remove, allow to cool and salt and pepper to taste. Cut into bite sized pieces and enjoy.