Don’t be afraid of the unknown……
Today I’m going to tackle a “love it or hate it” item that all of you meat share folks see now and again, including last week. Funny thing is…. I’ve discovered that most of the people in the “hate it” camp are only there because they don’t really know what to do with them, or how to prepare them in a way that brings out their delicate richness. I’m talking about chicken hearts & livers, and I’m going to give you a pate recipe so simple, yet so elegant, that you will blow away family or guests with your kitchen wizardry! For the non-meat eaters in the group- I’d love to know if this would work with tofu, tempeh, or maybe a legume or pulse alternate?
This recipe uses one bag of hearts or livers, but I normally wait until I have a couple of bags (of either or mixed together) as this recipe easily doubles or triples and freezes beautifully. I usually have a few 2 cup containers in the freezer at any given time as it’s a perfect instant meal spread on toast and served with a simple salad, or with some crusty bread, crackers, or chopped veg for dipping when those unexpected guests arrive.
Chicken Liver/Heart Pate
- 1 tbsp butter + 1 tbsp oil (or 2 tbsp oil of preference)
- 1 lb livers or hearts (or mix of both)
- 1 small onion diced
- 1 clove garlic diced
- 2 bay leaves (dried is fine)
- 1 handful fresh parsley roughly chopped
- ¼ tsp coarse salt
- ½ tsp ground black pepper (coarse if possible)
- 2 tbsp white wine or cooking sherry
- Big pinch of cayenne pepper
Thaw livers or hearts in fridge overnight (in a dish to avoid a leaking bag mess!)
Place in a colander & rinse under cold water for several minutes and then set aside. In a large pan, sauté onions over medium heat in butter/oil until soft (about 5 minutes) add minced garlic, bay leaves, cayenne (if using) and HALF of salt & pepper. Continue cooking for 2 or 3 minutes. If you are using wine or sherry, add it now to deglaze the pan and cook for another minute until almost all is evaporated.
Shake any excess water from colander & tip in hearts/livers and season with remaining salt & pepper. Stir frequently to avoid sticking and cook until just lightly pink in the center (about 5-6 minutes) They will be blended and don’t need to remain whole, so if you’re unsure, cut one in half to see the center.
Add chopped parsley, mix well & remove from heat. Allow to cool slightly, remove bay leaves & scrape everything into a food processor or blender. Blend on high until smooth.
If you’re going to freeze some- choose containers with a good tight fitting lid. Scoop into container, smooth down top freeze! When you thaw the pate for later use, you’ll notice that the top will have gone slightly grey where it was in contact with the air. This is perfectly fine- just give it a good stir & re-smooth top. You can also put a piece of cling film or a baggy directly against the pate before you put the lid on for freezing to help minimize the discoloration (oxidation)
ok. That’s it.
No, seriously. That’s all there is to it!
Love ya all some local food & see you next week!