Jewish World Review March 13, 2003 / 9 Adar II, 5763

Drs. Michael A. Glueck & Robert J. Cihak

The Medicine Men
JWR's Pundits
World Editorial
Cartoon Showcase

Mallard Fillmore

Michael Barone
Mona Charen
Linda Chavez
Ann Coulter
Greg Crosby
Larry Elder
Don Feder
Suzanne Fields
James Glassman
Paul Greenberg
Bob Greene
Betsy Hart
Nat Hentoff
David Horowitz
Marianne Jennings
Michael Kelly
Mort Kondracke
Ch. Krauthammer
Lawrence Kudlow
Dr. Laura
John Leo
Michelle Malkin
Jackie Mason
Chris Matthews
Michael Medved
Kathleen Parker
Wes Pruden
Sam Schulman
Amity Shlaes
Roger Simon
Tony Snow
Thomas Sowell
Cal Thomas
Jonathan S. Tobin
Ben Wattenberg
George Will
Bruce Williams
Walter Williams
Mort Zuckerman

Consumer Reports

Worldwide schmaltz shortage looms --- all because of a featherless chicken | It's always something! Two years ago it was the mad-gefilte fish disease. and last year the great matzoh shortage. As if Israel doesn't have enough tsuris (problems) now there emerges the coming worldwide schmaltz shortage just as Purim, Passover and other great holidays approach.

For those who have not yet savored schmaltz it is made from frying chicken fat with other, to be named later, delicacies. Connoisseurs save the darker fat, skin cracklings and onions for making chopped liver. In Europe rendered chicken fat is prized as a spread for bread. It also can be used in potato pancakes to enhance the flavor.


In May 2002 an Israeli geneticist developed a cost-effective, featherless chicken.. Avigdor Cahaner, of the Hebrew University, maintained that these chickens would grow faster in hot weather because they will not be prone to over-heating like normal chickens, whose growth rate drops when they get too warm.

While some reveled in the discovery, other people had a very different opinion of this latest deception of nature. Dr. Ian Duncan, Chairperson of Animal Welfare in the Department of Animal and Poultry Sciences at the University of Guelph, Ontario, and the foremost domestic fowl expert in North America, has stated that feathers are meant to cool as much as to heat, and that they are also designed to protect the skin surface.

One American observer, an inhabitant of Machipongo, Virginia, proclaimed on May 23, 2002, "The featherless chicken is cruel, obscene, and absurd."

There were similarly carping memos from SCAM (The Schmaltz Consumers Association of Maryland), SICK (Schmaltz Importers Co-operative of Kansas) and CLUCK, the Chicken Liver Underwriters Council of Kalamazoo.


BUT no one consulted with the chickens. It seems that they liked the bare bikini look in the Summer. Why wouldn't they? How would you like to play in the Negev at 110 degrees while wearing a fur coat?

And so it came to pass that within the group of surviving featherless chickens another miracle took place in the Jerusalem Hills. There was an unexpected adaptation in the chicken schmaltz chromosome (CSC) adjacent to the chicken feather chromosome (CFC) These birds stopped laying down subcutaneous fat. Word spread rapidly on the chicken web, err..., net.(

When the rest of the world's chickens heard about the cool chicks they developed an anxiety precipitated fat depletion throughout their entire bodies. Weight psychiatrists, of course, remain puzzled and skeptical. And thus a chicken fat shortage loomed large in January, 2003. Experts say that by April there will be no fat for schmaltz.

The tale of the bad news birds spread rapidly. Entire restaurant and manufacturing industries in New York are preparing for the fat famine. Producers of Yiddish goods all over New Jersey are suffering. No schmaltz means no matzoh balls, no spreads for bread, no potato pancakes, and no chopped liver. It is rumored, but not confirmed, that Mrs. Manischewitz and Mrs. Adler had severe indigestion and heartburn

In Cleveland, Ohio, philanthropist and noted fresser (eater) Jerome Schmelzer was going a little mashugina (crazy). He is in charge of the 65th birthday party for his Cleveland Heights High School class of 1956 to be held this July. One of the highlights of the class banquet was to be a chicken liver and schmaltz appetizer. He was going to call it the 'Schmelzer Schmaltzer'. But not to worry, Schmelzer is organizing an ad hoc committee that plans to go to Southern Israel to chase down the few remaining chubby dixie chicks. Costs are tax deductible if you keep your receipts!


For those of you who want to try it -- schmaltz can be made in a few minutes. That is, if you have some chicken fat in storage.

The ingredients are simple: 1/4 cup water; 1 medium onion sliced;1 small apple peeled, cored and sliced; chicken skin 1" squares; 1 pound chicken fat, roughly cut.

To Prepare: Put ingredients in a heavy pot with a cover on a medium fire. Leave the cover on until the sound of the water boiling and crackling is done. Remove the cover and lower the heat to low. Drain the clear fat at the first sign of browning. This is the clearest portion and is good as a spread for bread. Allow the remainder to cook on low heat.

Even as we talk amongst ourselves, thousands of agents from drug and pharmaceutical companies are scouring the Israeli deserts to locate and analyze fowl with the chicken non-fat gene. If we can isolate this gene maybe prosperity and peace will break out everywhere including The Middle East!

In thinness there is hope!

A happy and joyous Purim and a premature Passover to you all.

Why not sign-up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Michael Arnold Glueck, M.D., is a multiple award winning writer who comments on medical- legal issues. Robert J. Cihak, M.D., is past president of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons. Both JWR contributors are Harvard trained diagnostic radiologists. Comment by clicking here.


03/06/03: Legal metastases are killing us
02/28/03: Outside the Jury Box: Seeking Justice rather than a Lottery in Medical Liability
02/21/03: Workforce temperature rising; employer TLC in demand
02/14/03: Malpractice Insurance: They Reap What They Sue
02/12/03: Hawk, Dove or Groundhog: Diagnosis Critical List; Prognosis Uncertain
02/07/03: How about tax cuts for the "rich" and "poor"?
01/31/03: AIDS Bug Chasers
01/24/03: Libertarian moment or movement?
01/17/03: It's not just 'sue the docs' anymore
01/03/03: A pox on the critics; diagnosis sour grapes
01/03/03: If protesting is good for your health; then at least let's root for the home team
12/20/02: Obesidemic (obesity epidemic) or not?
12/20/02: Time for voluntary informed smallpox vaccinations
12/13/02: The real reason the state opposes homeschooling?
12/06/02: Conscience of a former conservative: Portrait of a political metamorphosis
11/27/02: Thanksgiving dinner hazard?
11/22/02: Time to think outside the box and inside the nucleus
11/15/02: The military should be protected from abusive environmental laws in times of war
11/11/02: Does Kyoto Treaty pose more harm than global warming?
10/31/02: Deep thoughts on Baseball, the World Series and Life: How about them Anaheim Angels?
10/23/02: "Pediatric rule" guinea pigs
10/23/02: Once the World Series ends, we need to create a Donnie Moore Day of Remembrance: Sports and mental health
10/18/02: Congress to senior patients: Do as we say not as we do for ourselves
10/11/02: Using pollution "scare labeling" to political advantage
10/04/02: The Great Asbestos Heist: Did Litigation and Junk Medical Science Helped Bring Down the World Trade Center?
09/27/02: The imminent rise of civic feminism: A far healthier national alternative in war and peace
09/20/02: A Ray A Day" to replace the daily apple?
09/13/02: Beware of celebrities hawking drugs
09/06/02: Avoid 9/11 overdose: Give blood to begin "September of Service," SOS
08/28/02: From Doubleday to strikeday: Baseball's collective anxiety attack
08/23/02: Should she or shouldn't she?: An alternative view on treating menopause with HRT
08/16/02: Cooking up defenses against germ warfare
08/02/02: Medicine, crime and canines
07/26/02: Lies, pathologic lies and the Palestinians
07/19/02: Medicare Drug Follies as in "now you see it, now you don't"
07/12/02: Anti-Profiling: A New Medically False Belief System
07/08/02: Don't procrastinate, vaccinate!
06/28/02: The scientific advances on the safe and effective deployment of DDT are being ignored, or denied. Why?
06/21/02: Sex and the system: In seeking healthcare men are different from women
06/14/02: The FDA, drug companies and life-saving drugs: Who's the fox and who's the hen now?
06/07/02: Medical Privacy Lost: A hippo on the healthcare back!
05/24/02: To clean up America's game: A (soggy) ground rule
05/10/02: Free speech is good medicine
05/03/02: Medicine's Vietnam
04/26/02: Attack on alternative medicine could lead to alternative lawsuits
04/12/02: Insure the 'crazies'?
04/09/02: No Time for Litmus Tests: In War We Need a Surgeon General and NIH, CDC, and FDA Directors
04/02/02: The scoop on soot: A dirty rotten shame?
03/22/02: Too many beautiful minds to waste: The first annual Caduceus Movie
03/15/02: Terror and transformation: Defense essential for health & state of mind
03/08/02: Diagnosis: Delusional
03/06/02: The great matzah famine
03/01/02: Is new Hippocratic Oath hypocritical?
02/15/02: Why the recent moaning about cloning?
02/08/02: Searching for Dr. Strangelove
01/15/02: Score one for the value of human life
01/04/02: Medical-legal-financial wake-up call
12/28/01: Who's afraid of a 'dirty bomb'?
12/21/01: End of medicine?
12/14/01: More heroes: Docs deserve a little credit after 9/11
11/16/01: Do we need 'Super Smallpox Saturdays'?
11/09/01: Why the post-9-11 health care debate will never be the same
11/01/01: Common sense good for our mental health
10/26/01: Your right to medical privacy --- even in terror time
10/12/01: Failed immigration policy ultimately bad for nation's mental health: Enemy within leads to epidemic of jumpy nerves
09/28/01: Can legal leopards change their spots: A treat instead of a trick
09/21/01: Civil defense again a civic duty
08/30/01: Shut down this government CAFE
08/23/01: School Bells or Jail Cells?
08/15/01: Time to take coaches to the woodshed
08/10/01: Blood, Guts & Glory: The Stem of the Stem Cell controversy

© 2002