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Il Talismano della Felicita, Italy, Translation Notes

Direct Translation: Chicken Liver Spread

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For six people, take three or four chicken livers and carefully remove the gall bladder with a paring knife, remove the pieces of liver that will be found in the intestines. Start cutting these livers and chop them until they have been reduced to pulp. Also chop a big bunch of flat-leaf parsley and cook each ingredient in a pan with a little butter. As soon as the livers are cooked – something that should happen almost immediately- add two pieces of washed garlic with the knife blade. Season with a pinch of pepper (salt isn’t necessary because of the garlic) and sprinkle 1/2 a tablespoon of flour over the mixture, soak with one or two tablespoons of broth or water, boil it again, mix it and remove the pan from the stove. Once you have removed it from the stove, add the juice of half a lemon. A loaf of bread should yield a dozen bread slices that are about 6 centimeters long, they should be about four centimeters long and the thickness should be half a centimeter. Fry these pieces of bread in a pan with a little bit of oil or butter and when they have turned a clear golden color remove them from the pan and on each crostini spread a little of the prepared compost. Immediately arrange the crostini nicely on a plate with a napkin and bring them to the table.

Translation notes:

Having never eviscerated a chicken (even after living in Africa!) I had absolutely no idea what the make-up of the chicken would be or what exactly the first sentence wanted me to do. After watching a rather graphic YouTube video on how exactly to remove the innards of a chicken, it turns out the gall bladder is attached to the liver and must be removed before cooking the chicken liver. Otherwise the contains sour bile contained inside the gall bladder would destroy the taste of the chicken. Luckily for me, this had already been removed from the liver!

Yesterday I was sitting with my roommate discussing “ito” vs. “ino” with my roommate. As many of you may know, Spanish is the king of the diminuitives. You drink your “lechita” with your “abuelita” in the “frescito. “Ito” in Spanish is most commonly used as an endearment. This is not always the case with “ino.” “Ino” can be used as an endearment,  but it is also often used as a suffix to describe to describe the size or extent of something. Thus, a “coltellino”  means a small knife, “ino” is not being used as an endearment, but rather as a description of the knife. You can of course say “cuchillito” in Spanish, but for a small sharp knife you would probably use “cortaplumas” instead.

As in the last translation, I did not translate “fuoco” literally. The recipe instructs me to “togliere dal fuoco la casseruolina” (remove the pan from the fire), however since many American kitchens do not have a gas stove, I chose to translate this as stove instead.

For those who are interested, here is the original Italian:

Prendete per sei person tre o quattro fegatini di galena togliete loro accuatamente il fiele e con un coltellino asportate anche qualche pezzetto di fegato che eventualmente presentasse delle tracce verdastre. Mettete questi fegatini sul tagliere e tritateli in modo da ridurli in poltiglia. Tritate anche un bel ciufo di prezzemolo e fate cuocere ogni ocsa in una casseruolina con un po di burro. Appena i fegatini saranno cotto – cio che avviene quasi subito- aggiunciate due acchiughe lavate con la lama di un cotello. Condite con un pizzico di pepe (sale non sara necessario a causa della acciughe) spolverizzate il compsto con mezzo suchianio di farina, bagnate con una cucchianta o due di brodo o d’acqua, fate dare ancora un bollo, mescolando e togliete dal fuoco la casseruolina. Fuori del fucoco spremete sul composto di fegatini il sugo di mezzo limone. Da un pane casetta avrete ricavato una dozzina di crostini lunghi circa sei centimetri, larghi quattro e spessi mezzo centimetro. Friggete questi crostini in una padellina con un po d’olio o burro e quando avranoo preso un colore biondo chiaro teglieteli dall padella e su ogni crostino spalmate un pochino del composto preparato. Accomodate subito i coristini untimati su un piatto con salvietta e fateli portare in tavola.

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1 Comment

  • Reply Caro October 31, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    That sounds like a gross experience – but was it TASTY?! Also I wish we had little endearment add-ons in English. I would use those a lot in my daily life.

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