There is nothing more divine than a perfectly executed pâté. It is heaven on a plate. You can make a lunch out of it. Serve it before dinner. I have even been known to spread this buttery rich pâté lavishly on morning toast.
Over the years in our various restaurants we served both rustic, coarse country terrines and silky refined pâtés. They are impressive as an appetizer or first course and having this recipe in your repertoire will make your reputation as a sophisticated, good cook.
This recipe has just a few basic ingredients. There is no legging it about town shopping for exotic food. The main ingredients are chicken livers, unsalted butter, cream and seasonings, but the results are nothing short of spectacular. The recipe goes together quickly and should be made the day before you plan to serve it. During the holiday season I made it for a dinner party a few days before Christmas, and then served it again for Christmas morning brunch. Left-overs, tightly covered, keep well in you refrigerator for several days.
You will find yourself making this elegant CHICKEN LIVER PÂTÉ over and over again.
|THE BEST AND EASIEST CHICKEN LIVER PATE|| |
- 3 tbsp duck fat or substitute unsalted butter.
- A generous cup of butter
- 1 pound (450 g) trimmed chicken livers, thawed if frozen
- 4 generous tbsp. Marsala wine, sherry, port or brandy
- 1 generous tbsp chopped fresh sage (do no substitute dried sage)
- 2 garlic cloves coarsely chopped (about 1 generous tbsp)
- ½ cup chopped onion
- ½ generous cup heavy cream
- About ½ tsp fine sea salt
- About ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- ½ tsp powdered allspice
- ½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
- a generous pinch of powdered cloves
- a generous pinch of cayenne pepper
- Fresh bay leaves or sage leaves for garnishing
- Melt the duck fat or butter in a large, heavy-bottom skillet. Add the chicken livers and saute over medium heat for about 4 minutes on each side. You don't want to cook these completely. They should be brown on the outside but still pink in the center. If you are not sure slice oneof the chicken livers to be sure it is cooked but still pink..
- Transfer to a food processor and process until finely chopped,.
- Add the cloves and chopped onion to the pan. If necessary add a little more butter. Saute over medium heat until tender (about 4-5 minutes). Scrape into the food processor.
- Stir in the Marsala into the skillet, scraping up any delicious brown bits with a wooden spoon and reduce until syrupy. Add to the food processor.
- Add the chopped sage to the food processor with about 7 tablespoons of the remaining butter(cubed). and process until smooth,.
- Add the cream, allspice, cayenne, nutmeg, and cloves, salt and pepper to the chicken liver mixture and process until smooth,
- Taste the mixture and adjust the seasoning of the salt and pepper. The mixture will be a thick liquid.
- Spoon the pate into a terrine or individual ramekins and let cool completely in the refrigerator.
- Once the pate has set melt the remaining butter in a small saucepan, then spoon over the surface of the pate, leaving any sediment in the pan.
- Garnish with herb leaves and let cool, then cover and chill in th refrigerator preferably over night.
- (note: You will use about half the butter in the pate mixture and the rest poured over the chilled pate. For utter indulgence you may add a little extra butter to the pate mixture.)
- This recipe gives you generous servings. I like to use individual ramekins that I then triple wrap in plastic wrap and freeze. I defrost them in the refrigerator Then I always have pate on hand.