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Thanks to Sam F, gizzard success

Remembering Sam's suggestions about the goodness of chicken gizzards, when I saw some on my virgin trip to H-Mart this week, I bought a package (2# for $3.98). I only tried to cook them once, many years ago, and got a rubbery mess that the cats and dogs loved. It's been many moons since I've seen them packaged separately in local supermarkets. They have livers, but no longer hearts or gizzards. I braised about a third of the package in tomato-chicken broth, with onions, garlic, and red bell pepper, for 2.5 hours. At the end I stirred in some teriyaki sauce and to make it creamy, a dollop of chive cream cheese. Really good! More than any other meat, I think they tasted like braised lamb shanks. I will freeze the remainder, but have in mind to try the Stroganoff idea.

I am looking for more info on how, or if, to trim raw gizzards. I think the ones I bought had already been split. There was a membrane with a lobe of meat on opposite sides, but if I turned the lobes over, there was some skin/membrane on the other side, too, Holding a paring knife nearly flat against the cutting board, I ran the blade between the membrane and lobe, starting in the middle (if it were a butterfly, it would be starting at the body and working toward the wing tips - sorry for the grisly analogy). I certainly didn't get rid of most of the membranous stuff, but after the braising it had all melted anyway.

With a dial-up connection, I can't watch online videos, but would appreciate any written info. TIA

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  1. I've just made up my mind to give gizzards a try.
    I really like chicken heart and I love putting livers into dirty rice, but my recollection of gizzard is similar to yours; out of mom's stock pot on turkey day and tough like hell. Plus anything with Sam's name is always solid!

    1. There is a thin but tough "skin" to remove. Out here we do this under running water with a very small-bladed paring knife. Find the end, grab it between blade and thumb & tug it off, continuing until done.
      My go-to recipe for gizzards - (unless simply frying up a pan) - is to sautee them, then, add an enormous quantitiy of onions cut into perfect 1/8" thick slices pressed apart until a mass of rings. Once the onions are wilted down a fair amount, add sufficient "El Pato" red sauce (In the yellow tin with the Mallard duck painted onto the center of the label). Leave it all covered, low and slow, to braise for quite some time.
      The gizzards almost melt away in our mouths & the rest - the star attraction for us all over here - is wonderful for sopping with the best bread available to you! A Feast!

      1. The japanese market Mitsuwa seems to have a way of trimming these guys but for the life of me I can't remember what and how they do it.

        If you're looking for a new way to make these, slow cook them in some salted water until they're completely tender - maybe an hour+.

        Then make a simple beer batter -I like the one here and deep fry those tender little suckers. Seriously good eating :)


        1 Reply
        1. re: stephle

          Sounds great but salt and deep-frying are verboten for me!

        2. What you made sounds great!

          I usually pound the gizzards between plastic wrap using a toothed tenderizer mallet; and then slice each into pieces (up and down each wing). As a result, the membrane is just a thin strip on each piece and can then be left as is.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Sam Fujisaka

            Thanks for the pounding suggestion - I wouldn't have thought of that, and hope I remember it by the time I use the rest of the package, which I froze ;-).

          2. Sounds strange, but I slow boil the gizzards for up to two hours..Do not add salt to the water. it makes them very tender. I find it too hard to remove the membraine , so a friend recommeded the boiling method.

            1 Reply
            1. re: HotMelly

              You boil them with the yellow membrane in-place?
              Then what happens?
              Do the membranes fall off into the water, or ???
              Do they remain a bright yellow, or turn a different color?
              This, I am curious about!
              It is a chore to remove them under cool clear running water with a very small-bladed paring type knife, but I never knew any other method in all these years!
              Color me: Intrigued!

            2. Susana.....After a few hours of boiling the meat and the membrane are tender...No need to remove anything. Sometimes after I boil them to make them tender I will flour them and deep fry them.Yummy

              3 Replies
              1. re: HotMelly

                I wasn't able to get more than half the membrane off the ones I bought, but as I wrote in the OP, it melted away during braising. Next time I cook them I will not trim them at all if I am braising. As Sam said in another post, gizzards are like squid - you need to cook them very quickly or for a very long time. If you want to thin-slice and stir-fry them, they'd need to be well-trimmed.

                1. re: HotMelly

                  Wow! If I hadn't killed more than my share of poultry (and dressed it for the kitchen) in my day (thereby seeing all the grit & ick in "fresh" gizzards, I might try that. But, knowing what that membrane's been up against, I just can't give it a go (knowingly) - I've had plenty of gizzards prepared by others & who knows how those were done? '-)
                  I'll keep on peeling.
                  For a variation (and textural/taste treat) try frying 'em up without boiling first. So yummy!
                  If you must, just add about an inch of water to the skillet, drizzle some oil over all, let boil down and fry on a med low heat ~ the gravy from the pan will be spectacular!
                  When the frying is happening, grind some pepper & salt over all.
                  Toward the end, you can add some onion rounds - not to the point of carmelizing, more just the other side of raw - not even totally translucent yet, if you get me.
                  The simply fried are bombastic finger foods for sports watching, etc - serve with hot sauce & icy cold beer!

                  1. re: SusanaTheConqueress

                    I love frying up all the chicken 'parts' this way Susana...it's such a tasty treat.

                2. I often see packaged gizzards at my Japanese grocery and am now determined to give them a try.
                  The slow cooking technique sounds intriguing. Can you cook them like a stew?
                  For instance, can I brown them , then braise them with stock and/or tomato along with some veggies?
                  I just made beef stew and it was so enormously satisfying, but I'd love to try a different protein.
                  Also, what's the nutritional content of gizzards? I'm thinking they are like most offal/innards and shouldn't be consumed too often. Or are they the other white meat??? ;)

                  Where do the chicken LIVERS go at Japanese groceries? My local Nijiya never has them, but has all other parts of the bird on offer.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: rabaja


                    At 1C/serving the calories aren't spooky, but almost 180% daily intake of cholesterol could be.

                    I can see them making a fine stew but I've never been called to create that, yet. Braising is the way, to me.

                    They're also super wonderful as a fried food, but need to be done "just so" to please me. I like 'em fried without the pre-boiling (as is done in Glendale at Dinah's (just a hop over from Americans) http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/51278 - where I am _certain_ they pre-boil their gizzards until there's nothing to crunch but the fried crispy outer layer of breading -
                    P.S. The tamales at the bakery next door are OK, too ~ as are some of the baked goods, like orejas.
                    (3) items not to miss with your gizzards at Dinah's (Which I believe was voted Best of Glendale
                    )1- mac & cheese - made witht he 1/4 inch tubes of pasta and cheese, not cheese sauce
                    (the (3) folk I brought with to sample the place had (3) dishes more of it - EACH
                    2- corn on the cob - it was _stellar_ ~ too bad the portions are "split cobs" ~ I forget how many additional cobs were ordered ~ "many" about covers it '-) It's as though fire roasted, then, boiled (???) and _VERY_ "just picked" (Though we sampled the wares in December - not corn season here)...
                    3- mashed potatoes & gravy ~ very delightful!

                    But the gizzards are simply too, too limp for me.
                    If you want to sample some before frying at home, try them at DInah's
                    If you want to have something excellent to much during Academy Awards/Superbowl/etc just fry 'em up at home & pass the hot sauce '-)

                    They're very delicious when left for a very long time in low & slow heavy cream. Very long & very low, then, create a sort of golden mushroom sauce with them and serve it over egg noodles. Delightful!

                    All-time best-ever is the simple one of copious onion rounds + El Pato & all the fresh baquettes you can lay hands on for sopping the sauce! '-) (See above post from me for the step-by-step on that one ~ _SO_ easy! :-)

                    Fried hearts are eh, "OK" and I've never had an inclination toward stewing up a batch, or doing anything with a batch of hearts ~ Just not my calling.

                    I can't explain the absence of livers. Buyers tend to purchase according to the clients' preferences, so maybe they could order you some "special request"?

                    I've seen "family packs" of them in Superior Markets, but haven't wanted to buy any meats I've ever seen in there... Nothing specific just a "vibe"...