Kishka?

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by hexnymph, Feb 3, 2004.

  1. hexnymph

    hexnymph

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    I’ve never tried it but the curiosity has struck me. Last night I cooked a liver sausage and thought it was very edible. I’m a huge fan of “potato rings”… it’s only a matter of time before I break down and try Kishka and Blood Sausage. How would one serve/prepare this?

    Hex
     
  2. suzanne

    suzanne

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    Kishka is one of those foods many of us grew up eating under particular circumstances, and if we never see it again it would be too soon. ;) No, actually, I love it, but I would never try to make it at home from scratch.

    Kishka isn't so much a sausage as a sort of Jewish haggis: starch, fat, and seasonings stuffed into unmentionable parts of an animal and steamed or roasted. It is a sure-fire heartburn inducer. I'm used to getting it as a special appetizer course at "affairs" -- bar mitzvahs, weddings, and other fancy meals held at synagogues or catering halls. There, or in delicatessens. My husband used to get it at a delicatessen in Brookline, MA (right next to Boston), where it sat heating in a mixture of all the gravies from all the other deli meats. Sounds great to me. :lips:

    If I were to prepare it at home -- after buying it already made -- I'd saute slices in a little schmaltz (chicken fat) and swamp it with a collection of all the dribs and drabs of gravies from my freezer.

    Blood sausage, otoh, IS a real sausage, and can be cooked as one: steam it, fry it, grill it. If you look up "boudin noir" you'll find French serving suggestions, and "morcilla" will get you Spanish/Hispanic ones. I believe a French way is to serve it with sauteed apples. (This is an item I have only eaten elsewhere, not cooked at home.)
     
  3. chrose

    chrose

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    :D That's a great description! Well said. I grew up eating it mostly on holidays, though my grandmother was a big proponent of it. Tasted okay, I always thought it a little too dry but with some brisket drippings it was okay.
     
  4. daveb

    daveb

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    I got into a discussion of kishka with a Polish firend years ago. She allowed as how Polish Kishka was something between blood sausage and English black pudding -- nothing like your normal (?) everyday Jewish kishka. Pork blood, if memory serves, was a primary ingrediant.

    :confused:
     
  5. hexnymph

    hexnymph

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    That's more of what I have available with the local sausage maker "Vollwerths".

    It's snout, rice, blood... and so on.
     
  6. mezzaluna

    mezzaluna

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    Suzanne, your description hits home- in the midsection! :D I love kishke, although my arteries don't.

    We never had it at home because I grew up far from serious delicatessens or kosher groceries. But I fondly remember my mom making a poor man's kishke (as if flour and fat-stuffed cow intestines weren't clear enough evidence of poverty) out of the following ingredients: flour (or matzo meal at Passover), schmaltz, salt and pepper stuffed into chicken neck skin. Mom sewed up one end of the cleaned skin with white sewing thread, stuffed in the fat/schmaltz, sewed the other end, then put it in the pot with the chicken she was braising (g'dempte). I couldn't get enough. Picking the thread out of my teeth is a childhood memory.
     
  7. jock

    jock

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    I've never heard of Kishke but being Scottish and a haggis lover (not all Scots are) it sounds delicious to me. Although haggis is made from sheep and not cow and the starch is oatmeal and not flour.
    I always thought that Blood Sausage and Black Pudding (that I grew up with) were one and the same. Apparently not. Does anyone know what the differences are?
    The black pudding I had was about as big around as a salami. My mother cut it into 1/2" slices and fried it, usually in lard or bacon fat. (It's a wonder I lived to be as old as I am :eek: )

    Jock
     
  8. suzanne

    suzanne

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    I had no idea there was such a thing! I'll have to look for it, maybe at a Polish coffee shop I eat at every so often. Sounds kind of like scrapple in a casing? Or similar to Cajun "boudin blanc" (which is nothing like the French sausage of the same name).

    Jock, maybe the difference between blood sausage and black pudding is the size, for one thing. The blood sausages I'm used to are more sausage-size. And, of course, the spicing varies depending on what the nationality/ethnicity is.

    Mmmmmmmmmmm, sausages! :lips:
     
  9. athenaeus

    athenaeus

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    Do you know that sephardic jews haven't even heard of them?

    Amazing!! What meat do they use to make it?
     
  10. mezzaluna

    mezzaluna

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    Athenaeus, the only "meat" involved in Easter European-style Jewish kishka is the beef casing. Unless you mean the ersatz version, helzel, which I described above. It's just starch, fat and maybe some seasonings.
     
  11. athenaeus

    athenaeus

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    Amazing! When I read this I though: " Yikes" and then I thought of kokoretsi.

    It's amazing how we think as normal what we consume and how we perceive as weird other people's food...
     
  12. amira

    amira

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    Hi,
    What you described is Helzele.
    Kishke is something quite similar : chop a large onion , then add 3 cups of flour, salt, paper, sweet paprika, pour canolla oil until you can form a loaf or more...
    Cut an aluominum foil put the loaf and close it like a candy. prick it and then put it in the "choolent" pot. In hebrew we call the choolent " Hamin".
    Beteavon.:)
     
  13. mezzaluna

    mezzaluna

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    Baruch habah, Amira!

    I hadn't tasted paprika in kishke before, but it would seem to be a good addition to what could be a bland, heavy stuffing.

    And yes, we did call the chicken neck ones "helzele". The word seems to be Yiddish. Do you know what it means? I don't remember knowing the actual meaning. Todah rabbah....
     
  14. suzanne

    suzanne

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    In the interests of research ;) I ordered the kishka today at Teresa's, the Polish restaurant I mentioned above. It was great! Like a giant blood-and-rice sausage, with a bit of a spicy little kick and a kind of bacony flavor to the crisp outside. I gave Paul a taste, and he liked it, too. My only problem was that we were eating with my beloved Aunt Bette, who keeps kosher, and I didn't want to corrupt her delicate ears by explaining that it was not merely a blood sausage (treyf!!) but probably pig's blood (oy oy oy). So I kind of muttered a description, focussing heavily on the rice. I know, I'll burn in **** for that. Or for something else. But that stuff was GOOD.

    BTW: Bette said that her mother (my grandmother) used to make helzel almost every week, as part of the Sabbath dinner; no wonder, Bette said, her father died relatively young.
     
  15. mezzaluna

    mezzaluna

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    Suzanne, your story made me laugh!! :lol: I have a couple for you:

    When I was growing up, my stepfather wouldn't allow any pork or bacon to be served at meals. (Strangely, we ate Oscar Mayer boiled ham and bologna and ate pork in restaurants. Ah, the fictions we nurse!) My mom hadn't learned how to make pork chops or anything, having grown up in a kosher home, and my father (her first husband) and she had kept a kosher home.

    Mom always has loved bacon, but would never make it at home out of respect for my stepdad. But once he went on a business trip and she announced we were having BLTs for dinner. I was sent to the garage to set up a card table and cover it with newspaper. I set the electric griddle on it and heated it up. I was then given a pound of bacon to fry in the garage so the incriminating odor of the bacon wouldn't linger in the house.

    The other story concerns my bubbe and another business trip. Bubbe was staying with us. Mom announced we were having veal chops for dinner- not unususal, but they were typically an item for when my stepdad was home. Mom baked them bathed in a can of mushroom soup, something she had never done before. She served them to her mother who tasted them with a curious look on her face. "They're veal chops, Ma," my mom explained. My grandmother gave her a knowing nod and ate them enthusiastically. After 75 years you can tell a veal chop from an imposter....
     
  16. amira

    amira

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    You are right! Helzale is in Yiddish and i don't know what the actual meaning is...
    All i know is that when my sister and i were young we use to fight over them. My mother didn"t make them often and when she finally did we would hear about how hard it is to make them...
    Hag Pessach Sameach!
    amira. :)
     
  17. annka

    annka

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    Hello,

    ten years later if anyone is interested Yiddish is known for being very descriptive but it is very straight forward when it comes to cooking.

    Helzele is a small neck but usually means stuffed chicken necks.

    Kishka comes from Polish and means intestine.  In Jewish food it used to be made from cow intestines.
     
  18. mezzaluna

    mezzaluna

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    Hello Annka, and welcome to Chef Talk. You're correct that this post originated some years ago (not quite 10, though). Having a search tool makes it easier to wend your way through our 10+ years worth of information.

    I managed to learn "a bissel Yiddish" when my bubbe lived with us; most of the vocabulary fell into the food and cooking category. It's a precious part of my past.

    I hope you'll wander over to the Welcome Forum so we can give you a proper Chef Talk welcome!

    Mezzaluna
     
  19. chefross

    chefross

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    Oh how I miss Kishka...It has been so many years........Mom would wrap it in aluminum foil and place it in a dish in the oven  It would burst every time. I remember how good it was and how I especially left the skin for last so I could enjoy it. The stuffing was very heavy and you needed water, or wine to help it go down, but I loved it. 
     
  20. angrybob

    angrybob

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    I once had someone explain kosher rules to me. I thought that if someone kept kosher they couldn't eat anything from the back half of the cow, basically under what would be it's waistline, let alone eating it's intestines. If that is correct then kishkas wouldn't be kosher ?  I thought for a food to be Jewish  it also had to be kosher?  Would someone please elaborate.  Thank you.