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Ptcha Perfect

How to make this treat

Marc Tracy
April 24, 2012
Calf foot, pre-ptcha.(Abigail Miller)

Calf foot, pre-ptcha.(Abigail Miller)

Grace Bello’s tribute to the Ashkenazic cow’s-foot-jelly delicacy known as ptcha today in Tablet Magazine prompted anguished replies from the comments: where’s the recipe?!

Well, here is what art director Abigail Miller used to make ptcha, which she then photographed to make your eyes and mouth water. It’s by Irene Saiger, whose blog is here.

Ptcha (Calves’ Foot Jelly)

2 calves’ feet

1 bay leaf

5 or 6 cloves garlic, minced

2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. pepper

Soak calves’ feet in cold water for about an hour and discard water. Then place feet in pot, cover with cold water and bring to boil.Skim the surface. Add a bay leaf and cook for several hours (2-3) until all meat, fat and gristle falls off the bone. You may have to skim the top several times.

While feet are cooking, mince all the garlic and place in the bottom of 9 x 13 pan along with salt and pepper.

Remove meat (and all other bits) from pot, finely chop by hand (my mom used a hackmesser) and place in pan. Discard bay leaf and slowly add hot broth to meat mixture. Broth should be very flavorful. Add more garlic, salt and pepper as needed. Let dish cool on counter, and then cover and refrigerate overnight.

Cut into squares and serve with lemon wedges.

A Disappearing Delicacy [Tablet Magazine]

Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.

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