France—Liver Pate

 

French Appetizerfrench liver pate

Liver Pate
Pate de Foie de Volaille
(Serves 6)

The famous French pate—fois gros—is made from goose liver. We use chicken livers, and you won't believe how elegant yet easy this recipe is.


2 T butter
1 small onion (chopped)
1 small apple (peeled, cored, sliced)
1 lb. chicken livers
3 T Calvados (apple brandy)
3/4 C butter (softened)
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

Cook: in a large skillet, saute onion and apple till soft, add chicken livers, cooking just till livers are no pink (don’t overcook). Remove from heat and allow to cool 15 minutes.

Blend: in a food processor, blend liver mixture till smooth, and add remaining ingredients. Blend till to a consistency of light cream cheese.

Serve: turn into a bowl or ramekin and chill 4-6 hours (or overnight). Serve with sliced apples and a loaf of crusty French bread (or nonsalty, wafer-type crackers, like water crackers).


*You can add about 1/4" of melted, clarified butter to the top of the pate and chill it till the butter hardens. Oh, my!

For something a little less artery-clogging, toast finely chopped pecans in a little butter. Add to the top of the pate...and chill. Delectable!

| See more French recipes |

Tips & Glossary

Bouquet Garni: (boo-kay gar-nee) bundle of herbs tied together with string or wrapped in cheese cloth square; usually parsley, thyme, bay leaf, and peppercorns. Flavor is released during long cooking.Remove before serving.

Chervil: (sher-vil) related to parsley but has a delicate anise flavor. Long cooking kills flavor, so add at the last minute.

Cornichon (kor-nee-shon) teeny-tiny pickle, served with pates & smoked meats; found in specialty food stores.

Fines Herbes: (feen-airb) mix of finely chopped herbs: parsley, chives, tarragon, & chervil. Not as strong as a bouqet garni. Buy it at most grocery stores.

Fromage: (fra-mahj) Cheese! The French eat more than any nationality, 45 pounds per capita per year; and the country makes more cheeses than any other country, about 400.

The three great pedigreed French cheeses are:
• Brie (East of Paris)
• Camembert (Normandy)
• Roquefort (Southwest France, from sheep’s milk)

There are also wonderful lesser-known cheeses:
• Beaufort (Rhone Alps, hard, yellow Gruyere-type)
• Chevre (Loire Valley, soft, goat’s milk)
• Comte (Alps region, hard, yellow Gruyere-type)
• Emmental (Alps region, “Swiss” cheese with holes)
• Gruyere (hard, yellow cheese—originally French, now most is Swiss)
• Tomme (means “cheese”; soft, many varieties, all from skim milk)

Herbes de Provence (airb-duh-pro-vonce): mix of dried herbs, usually thyme, rosemary, marjoram, basil, & bay leaf Can be found at most grocery stores.

Mutarde: (moo-tard), mustard. Most famous:
• Dijon ( from the town in Burgundy)
• Meaux (from Meaux, east of Paris; whole-grained; made by Pommery).

Nicoise Olive: (nee-swaz- oh-leev) small, purplish-black olive with a mellow, nutty flavor; used primarily in Salade Nicoise. The Picholine variety is a green, medium-sized olive with a light, nutty flavor.

Roux: (roo) paste-like mix of melted butter and flour, into which liquid is gradually added. The basis of every classic French sauce.
Basic Roux: 1 part butter to 1 part flour. Melt butter and add flour, stirring vigorously, till it becomes a paste-like consistency. At this point, add slowly whatever liquid your recipe calls for

 

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