Chopped Eggs and Onions

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Yield:

    4 to 6

    Servings

Appears in

My grandmother’s chopped eggs and onions got their flavor boost from griebenes, the cracklings of fat and skin that are a by-product of making schmaltz, poultry fat. I add well-browned onions and their oil for the same effect.

For Passover, serve on soft lettuce leaves, or for a gussied-up presentation, in radicchio or alternating pale green and red Belgian endive leaves. Or pack into small custard cups or cleaned tuna cans and invert onto frilly greens. Grated Black Radish and Endive Salad in Shallot Vinaigrette is a superb complement.

This should be rather coarse and crumbly, not at all paste-like. Using a food processor—even in pulsing motion—usually results in some overly large chunks and some paste. I find it much easier to chop this in an old-fashioned wooden chopping bowl with an inexpensive curved hand-chopper (like the half-moon-shaped Jewish hockmeisser or crescent-shaped Italia mezzaluna). It’s much quicker to clean than the food processor, too.

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Ingredients

  • 3 to 5 tablespoons best-quality olive or avocado oil
  • ½ cup thinly sliced onions plus ½ cup finely chopped onion
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 hard-boiled large eggs, peeled and cut into eighths
  • Olive Oil Schmaltz or Poultry Schmaltz (optional)

Method

Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a medium skillet, and add the sliced onions. (I use sliced onion here because chopped onion can be quite watery, so it doesn’t fry as well and has a tendency to burn when made in small amounts.) Sauté over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until rich golden-brown. Salt and pepper lightly and remove from the heat to cool.

Scrape the sautéed onion and all the oil remaining in the skillet into a wooden bowl, and chop coarsely. Add the eggs and raw onion, and continue to chop until the mixture is well blended but not pasty. Mix in salt and lots of pepper as you chop, or blend in the seasonings afterwards with a fork. (Using a spoon will make the mixture too smooth.) The mixture should hold together loosely; you will probably need to add some of the schmaltz or a bit more oil. Chill well, but remove from the refrigerator at least 15 minutes before serving.

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