Serves a Crowd

The Most Requested Pâté Ever

December 17, 2009
1 Rating
Author Notes

I started making pâté quite a few years ago, and with ongoing tweaking have gotten it just right (I think!) whenever I ask friends what to bring to a party the answer is pretty much always "pâté " (or pâté AND ... ha ha) . This is a BIG batch - enough to eat some right away, bring some to the party, and freeze some in case of emergency! I like to serve it with an assortment of savory garnish to balance the sweetness of the pate. —aargersi

Test Kitchen Notes

The flavors in this pate are wonderfully developed and perfectly balanced. The combination of bacon (I used applewood smoked, as suggested), apple, sage and Calvados was excellent. Aargersi says this pate is a hit at her parties and it was loved by all the people I served it to. A couple of notes: After adding the two sticks of butter, the onions stew in the butter and by the time they brown, about 10 minutes, the butter is in the process of clarifying. I’d recommend sautéing the onions in the rendered bacon fat, then adding the butter and the apples. Also, it should be pointed out that this makes a ton of pate, about twice as much as I would ever need at one time. I’d suggest cutting the recipe in half, which can be easily done, and there would still be enough to freeze for future use. —Rural Eating

  • Prep time 20 minutes
  • Cook time 1 hour
  • Serves many
  • 2 lbs chicken livers
  • 4 strips bacon (applewood smoked if you can get it)
  • 1 large sweet onion
  • 2 granny smith apples
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 6 fresh sage leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup calvados (or brandy if you can't get your hands on calvados)
  • salt and pepper
  • minced red onion - GARNISH
  • cornichon - GARNISH
  • chopped boiled egg - GARNISH
  • capers - GARNISH
  • dijon mustard - GARNISH
In This Recipe
  1. Peel and chop the onion. Peel, core and chop the apples. Don't worry about finesse - they will all get ground up later.
  2. Put the chicken livers in a colander, rinse thoroughly, trim membranes and weird green things, and leave them in the sink to drain (note - these can be used to frighten children until you cook them!)
  3. Cook the bacon in the largest skillet you own. Cook it until it is quite crisp, and remove it - set aside.
  4. Add 2 tbs of the butter and onions to the skillet (yes, leave that bacon fat in there) and cook them over medium heat until they are caramelized and a nice golden brown. Now add remaining butter, and the apples and cook the whole lot until the apples are very tender.
  5. Add the chicken livers and calvados, and cook until the livers are cooked through.
  6. Turn off the heat, chop and add the sage leaves and nutmeg, taste the liquid and add some fresh ground black pepper. Break the bacon up and add that too.
  7. Working in batches, put the liver mixture in the food processor and process until fairly smooth - taste as you go and adjust the salt if needed (the bacon adds salt which is why you wait). Put each batch in a large bowl when it is processed so you can mix the whole thing together at the end.
  8. Put in bowls or tupperware, chill, freeze, or keep warm if you are serving it right away. Serve with any or all of the following (I like to put each garnish in a separate little bowl for serving - it looks nice and gives your guests the choice of which they prefer): minced red onion, chopped boiled egg, capers, cornichon, dijon mustard

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I work in databases by day, but creativity is my outlet. Food - imagining it, making it, sharing it. And art, I come from a family of artists and have been collaging in my garage studio. You can see my work on Etsy in my shop AbbiesGarage