When Czech Goes South Dakotan, It’s Chislic

Chislic is a South Dakota thing, says pollymerase, "as I had never heard of it before I got there, and I have never heard or thought about it since I left (until now!)"

"Chislic is Czech—as are many good people from South Dakota," says kaleokahu. "My wife is Czech and grew up in SD (yeah, take that, San Diego), so I've had the simple pleasure of this simplest aspect of Czech cuisine—other than cold pivo." [Editor's note: Pivo is beer.] Chislic is skewered, fried chunks of meat—whatever is freshly killed, be it "goat, lamb, beef, pork, fowl, game, whatever. My favorites are venison, pheasant, or duck by virtue of taking a quick, deep sear, and remaining bloody-juicy within," says kaleokahu.

"I had a roommate who was from central SD and she would make it sometimes at our apartment," says pollymerase. "She would marinate beef (don't recall exactly what was in the marinade aside from garlic) and then simply drop it into a counter-top fryer. She always seasoned it with Lawry's after she pulled it out. I don't remember much about the actual taste of chislic, I mainly remember the apartment smelling like grease for days after."

"Sounds like what you are all describing is Shashlik, which is basically skewered and grilled anything (not really fried). It is Turkish-Middle Eastern and it is a staple food in the Middle East," says Uncle Yabai. Indeed, "Shashlik = chislic = shish kebab," says Will Owen. "Amazing how these things get around!"

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