Chicken Liver Pate
From Ina Garten
Now that Thanksgiving is officially over, I can finally do my annual useless blogger duty and post the stuff I brought to my family’s dinner a week too late for it to be of any use to you. On the plus side, there’s always Christmas, and this year’s line-up is pretty transferable. That is, of course, if you come from a giblets/offals/variety meats loving family. We had initially offered to bring a cheese and charcuterie platter to add to my family’s appetizer table, and it was really just supposed to be a fancy name for cheese and sausage crackers. But 4 days before Turkey Day, I suddenly had the urge to locate, cook and mash up a few chicken livers (I assume this is a common urge…no?). As it turns out, despite its lofty price tag on fancy French menus, pate is dirt cheap to make. A pound of chicken livers cost us about $4 at Whole Foods, making it perhaps the cheapest thing Whole Foods sells. The duck fat, also located at WF’s, was a little pricier at around $8 for a tub, but it’s a big tub and we’ve got plenty of ideas for ways to use the leftovers. I really don’t see any way this recipe could go wrong, as long as you’re sure the recipients are old school liver-lovers…or new school, considering my 6th grade cousin took to making pate-cracker sandwiches with it all night!
- 1 lb chicken liver
- 1/2 cup rendered duck fat, divided (or chicken fat, if you can find it, or butter if you can’t find either of them)
- 1 cup yellow onion, diced
- 1/6 cup Marsala wine (or Madeira, or Sherry, or Port)
- 2 eggs, hard-boiled, cooled, peeled, and cut into chunks (see our Deviled Egg recipe for instructions on cooking perfect hard-boiled eggs)
- 2 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- pinch of cayenne pepper
- Drain the livers and pat them down with paper towels to remove extra moisture.
- Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat and add 2 tablespoons of the duck fat.
- When fat is melted and hot, add livers. Cook about 1-2 minutes per side. You don’t want to overcook them or they’ll be super dry. They should be brown on the outside and still pink on the inside.
- Use tongs to pull livers out of pan and set aside in a large bowl.
- Add 1 1/2 tablespoons more duck fat to the skillet. Saute onions until golden brown, about 5-7 minutes.
- Add Marsala to the pan, scraping the bottom with a wooden spatula to deglaze all the yummy bits. Stir for about 15 seconds. Pour onion mixture into the bowl with the livers.
- Add eggs, parsley, thyme, salt, pepper, cayenne and remaining 4 1/2 tablespoons of duck fat to the bowl and stir to combine.
- Place mixture in a food processor and pulse to desired consistency – 6 or 7 times for more of a chopped liver result, 10-15 times for more of a creamy pate.
- Chill before serving.
Makes a LOT of pate – probably about 2.5 cups.