Recipe: Chicken Liver Pate

Ingredients

• 2 x 250g packs of butter (1 for clarfying and one for blending, or if you have clarified butter available used that.)

• Pack of sage leaves

• olive oil (for frying)

• 2 red onions, peeled and finely chopped

• 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped

• Small bunch of thyme

• 1kg chicken livers trimmed

• sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

• 150mls of brandy

If you don’t have clarified butted its pretty easy to make. Put one of the packs of butter in a pot on low heat and let it slowly melt for about 30-45 minutes or until the top is clear butter/oil and you can see the white residue at the bottom of the pot. Try and skim the clear stuff off the top and put into another pot.

In the pot with the clarified butter slowly warm on a medium heat and add a few sage leaves to test the warmth of the butter. Put to aside and leave.

In a second large pot/pan heat the olive oil and when hot add the onion, garlic and thyme leaves. Fry fast but don’t burn, you want the onion to be clear and they are soft. Add some more oil, the chicken livers and a some salt and pepper. Cook on a high heat about 10mins max or they will get too tough and it won’t be such a smooth flavour. (it won’t ruin the pate but its a bit rough)

In the other pot/pan sage leaves are fried and crispy, add the rest of the sage leaves and take the pan off the heat and leave to one side.

Add brandy to the pan of livers, and let it cook off. Flames are ok if you can manage them, but don’t worry if it doesn’t flame up!

Tip everything straight into a food processor or blender if you haven’t got one. The blender takes a little longer and I found I had to do it in batches (which is arduous).  Have a taste, and season to where you’re happy, its ok if you are a little heavy on seasoning as the taste changes when its colder and set.

Dice up your remaining pack of butter, and add it piece by piece, with the food processor/blender still running. Wait for each piece to be combined before adding more (you can also slightly melt the butter if you want to speed things up). Keep tasting as you go and add salt and pepper and blend to the consistency you like.

You can store it/serve it in whatever you like. I used disposable bowls as was easy to store and give away to friends.

If you prefer smooth pate, I found pushing it through a steel sieve helped the consistency.  The pate should be cold for the next step but don’t worry too much if you are pressed for time. I did the last step when the pate was still tepid.

Use the sage butter thats clarified to act as a seal. Put a leaf or two of the sage onto the pate as creatively as you like, then slowly spoon the clarified butter so it covers the top of the pate acting as a seal. Cover up and place in the fridge to harden.

Once harden or until you can wait no more, take some crackers or toast and smear away to you hearts content.

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