Throw Back Thursday! Rumaki

It’s throw back Thursday – the day we bring you recipes from the past. Here’s one that hit it’s peak in the 1950s and 60s and then quietly faded off into the sunset. Rumaki. But where did it come from?

throw back

The first written mention of rumaki is on the 1941 menu at Don the Beachcomber’s restaurant in Palm Springs, California. But it’s most remembered as a treat invented by Vic Bergeron of Trader Vic’s Tiki restaurants. I guess we’ll never know where it came from, but it showed up on Polynesian menus across the U.S.

And exactly what is rumaki?

Rumaki is simply marinated chicken livers and water chestnuts wrapped up in some bacon. And it’s so good!! It was typically served on appetizer platters, called a pu pu platter in Polynesian places.

So lets throw back a few decades and have a “pu pu” party!

Here’s How to Do Throw Back:

Start by giving the bacon a little precooking. Preheat the oven to 350°.

Lay the bacon on the rack of a roasting pan and

bake, about 5 to 10 minutes, or until it’s just slightly cooked, but still soft. This will help to render some of the fat out so it will crisp up in the oven faster.

Remove to a wire rack to cool.

While the bacon is cooking, start the marinade.

Cut the livers into pieces.

Place all the ingredients (except the bacon) into a bowl and gently stir. Place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

Now the assembly. Cut each bacon slice in half.

throw back

Turn the oven back on, but set it at 400°.

Place a chicken liver and one water chestnut on a piece of bacon.

Carefully roll it up and secure with a toothpick. It sounds easy, but those chicken livers will try to slip right out. Keep trying. It will work.

throw back

Lay each rolled liver onto a wire rack.

Keep wrapping until you have all 12 done. Save the marinade.

Place the rack into a hot oven and bake for about 10 to 15 minutes. Make sure the bacon had gotten crisp and the liver is no longer pink. But don’t overcook. The liver will be dry.

While they are cooking, pour the marinade into a small sauce pan and bring to a rolling boil.

Reduce heat and stir in butter.

Continue to simmer, stirring often, until the sauce gets thick and syrupy. Remove from the heat and set aside.

When the rumaki is cooked, remove from the oven and set on the stove to cool just a bit.

throw back

Place each piece in a serving bowl and

pour the sauce over the top.

Serve immediately!

© Copyright 2021 The Lazy Gastronome

throw back

Rumaki

Rumaki is simply marinated chicken livers and water chestnuts wrapped up in some bacon. And it's so good!! It was typically served on appetizer platters, called a pu pu platter in Polynesian places.

Course: Appetizer, appetizers, hors d'oeuvre, pu pu
Cuisine: American, Chinese, Hawaiian, Polynesian
Keyword: bacon, chicken livers, teriaki, tiki, water chestnuts
Servings: 12 appetizers
Author: HelenFern
Ingredients
  • 6 slices thin bacon
  • 12 pieces chicken livers (I cut 3 large ones into quarters)
  • 12 small water chestnuts (if they are too large cut them in half)
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon curry powder
  • 2 Tablespoons brown sugar (dark or light)
  • dash each salt and pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
Instructions
  1. Start by giving the bacon a little precooking. Preheat the oven to 350°.

  2. Lay the bacon on the rack of a roasting pan and bake, about 5 to 10 minutes, or until it's just slightly cooked, but still soft. This will help to render some of the fat out so it will crisp up in the oven faster.

  3. Remove to a wire rack to cool.

  4. While the bacon is cooking, start the marinade. Place all the ingredients (except the bacon) into a bowl and gently stir. Place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

  5. Now the assembly. Cut each bacon slice in half. 

    Turn the oven back on, but set it at 400°.

  6. Place a chicken liver and one water chestnut on a piece of bacon.

  7. Carefully roll it up and secure with a toothpick. It sounds easy, but those chicken livers will try to slip right out. Keep trying. It will work. Lay each rolled liver onto a wire rack.

  8. Keep wrapping until you have all 12 done. Save the marinade.

  9. Place the rack into a hot oven and bake for about 10 to 15 minutes. Make sure the bacon had gotten crisp and the liver is no longer pink. But don't overcook. The liver will be dry.

  10. While they are cooking, pour the marinade into a small sauce pan and bring to a rolling boil. Reduce heat and stir in butter. 

  11. Continue to simmer, stirring often, until the sauce gets thick and syrupy. Remove from the heat and set aside.

  12. When the rumaki is cooked, remove from the oven and set on the stove to cool just a bit.

  13. Place each piece in a serving bowl and pour the sauce over the top.

  14. Serve immediately!

Recipe Notes

 

© Copyright 2021 The Lazy Gastronome

throw back

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2 Responses to Throw Back Thursday! Rumaki

  1. I can remember eating this, possibly at Trader Vic’s. And it was delicious!

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