Chopped Liver

Served as an appetizer on a bed of lettuce or piled between two slices of bread and eaten as a sandwich, the 2nd Avenue Deli’s smooth, creamy chopped liver is among the best in New York City. The restaurant makes its version of this traditional eastern European Jewish dish with both beef and chicken livers, which gives it a meatier, richer taste. (Additional chicken livers can be substituted for the beef liver for those who prefer it that way. It will have a lighter, somewhat creamier texture.)


  • 4 tablespoons corn oil
  • 3 tablespoons schmaltz (rendered chicken fat)
  • 2 large onions, coarsely chopped (about 4 cups)
  • 1 1/2 pounds beef liver
  • 1 pound chicken livers
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs, peeled
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the corn oil and 2 tablespoons of the schmaltz over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until well browned, about 30 minutes. Transfer the onions to the refrigerator to chill.

Meanwhile, preheat the broiler. Rinse the livers thoroughly. Using a small, sharp knife, cut away membranes and visible fat. Cut the beef liver into 1-inch pieces (the chicken livers can remain whole).

Put the beef and chicken livers in a single layer on a large baking sheet and drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons corn oil. Broil for 8 to 10 minutes (keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn’t burn). Turn the liver pieces over and broil until the livers are cooked through and lightly browned on both sides, an additional 5 minutes. Transfer the livers to a mixing bowl and place in the refrigerator to chill.

Working in two batches, combine the livers, onions, hard-boiled eggs, remaining tablespoon of schmaltz, the salt, and the pepper in the bowl of a food processor and blend until smooth. Chill before serving.


makes about 6 cups