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Christmas Pate

 
pollinator
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Location: near Athens, GA
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Since most Permies keep chickens, I thought y'all might enjoy this.  Here is an old recipe from the French side of my family.  I just made some for Christmas and it really is great.  It works with any kind of poultry liver, and because you use butter, it works great with wild duck and goose liver - doesn't have to be farm fattened (which I don't consider to be ethical).

1/2 pound chicken livers
2 boiled eggs
1/2 cup chicken broth
4 tablespoons butter (more if you want to add softened butter to the pate after it is finished)
1/2 cup finely chopped onion or shallot
1 pinch parsley
1 shot brandy
salt and pepper to taste
a pinch +/- (to taste) each nutmeg, cloves and mustard powder
a couple dashes Worcestershire sauce

Cook the livers in the broth, simmering about 10 minutes (if you like mushrooms, you can add a few, finely chopped at this point)
drain and reserve the broth
mash the livers and boiled eggs to a very smooth paste (you can use a food mill or food processor, but a fork works fine)
lightly brown the onions in the butter - get them very soft
add the onions, brandy and a little broth at a time, until you get the right consistency
add the spices, tasting as you go

Serve on crackers or buttered toast.  You can add or substitute a lot of things - some people like a little hot pepper, some use bourbon, Irish whiskey or a sweet wine like port, sherry or madeira. Toasted pecans go really well with it.   Sometimes I make an Asian flavored version using soy sauce, ginger and sesame oil.... but the above has a real Christmasy flavor.  It is also great in a meat pie with some steak or deer meat.

Merry Christmas y'all - may the best of the past be the worst of the future!
 
pollinator
Posts: 316
Location: Virginia
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books chicken cooking
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WJ, this sounds great! I bookmarked it so I can try it next time I harvest chickens.  The last batch of livers were already gobbled.

Would the texture be affected if I used livers accumulated in the freezer? This time of year I only have occasional birds to process and it will take a while to get a half pound.
 
Wj Carroll
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Location: near Athens, GA
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I've done that many times... essentially, the difference is negligible so long as they don't freezer burn.  I'll never forget the tragedy of loosing a large batch to freezer burn!
 
Tina Hillel
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books chicken cooking
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Thanks for the info.  I did have some get lost in the freezer once.  It was a sad day for me but the dog was very happy...
 
Wj Carroll
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Oops, I forgot the turmeric, hot pepper and rice wine in the Asian version.  That version is different, but a real treat on occasion... like, when you really want some Asian food, but either its too far to drive or all the restaurants nearby suck.... which is the case where I am.  There is a great Thai place, but it is expensive.  So, I got a few basic cookbooks and to simulate the high temp wok burners, I use the "chimney" for starting charcoal on the grill - rocket hot!
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