Chicken Liver Pate with Prosecco Gelee, although not the most beautiful dish ever, is rich, earthy, and delicious!
As a youngster the idea of pate conjured up thoughts of stuffy dinner parties afforded by the wealthy or antiquated recipes pulled from the coffers to impress. I thought of boiled, grayish meat with the texture of gritty mush. Eeew, this was certainly not anything that I wanted to experience so I kept my distance.
In my early twenties I had an occasion to once again try pate. In an attempt to prove my new-found adulthood, sophistication and culinary prowess, I took the plunge with a toasty piece of baguette. Oh…..oh…..ooooooh my goodness this stuff is good! That night I truly learned the meaning of ” don’t judge a book by its cover”. Pate, although not the most beautiful dish ever is absolutely delicious! Rich, earthy, salty, meatiness perfectly melded with savory herbs and spices. The texture was silky and smooth like spreadable meat butter. This pate was so addictive that I set about teaching myself how to make it at home.
There are many types of ingredients that can be used to make pate, duck, liver, veal and game are some of the most typical. There are also many cooking methods and styles such as pate in terrine, pate in crust and chunky, country-style pate, to name a few. Pate can be served hot, cold or at room temperature with a variety of accompaniments.
After years of pate making and eating I have narrowed the field down to a few favorite recipes one of which I’m sharing with you today. This Chicken Liver Pate with Prosecco Gelee recipe uses inexpensive ingredients that are easy to prepare and readily available. I add a touch of elegance to my pate by topping it with a delicate Prosecco gelee. Pate is usually served as a first course or appetizer but I enjoy pate so much that I often eat it as a main course for lunch or dinner with some country bread, a side salad and a glass of wine. I’ve also been known to serve it as a snack or bring some along for a charming countryside picnic. To be totally honest with you, I am hedonistically enjoying some pate for breakfast as I sit here writing this post.
Pate has the ability to make any moment or occasion no matter how large or small, feel a bit more enchanting and deeply satisfying. You should definitely add this Chicken Liver Pate with Prosecco Gelee recipe to your repertoire to make at your leisure.
- 1 pound of fresh chicken livers (drained and lightly rinsed in cool water to remove blood)
- 1/3 cup of finely minced shallots
- 1/4 cognac
- 8 tablespoons of butter (softened and divided)
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 3 tablespoons heavy cream (more if necessary)
- 1/4 cup cool water
- 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup Prosecco
- A handful of fresh herb sprigs (chervil, thyme, tarragon *optional)
- Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat and melt 4 tablespoons of the butter. Add the minced shallot and cook until fragrant and translucent, approximately 1-2 minutes. Careful not to brown the shallots.
- Add the livers, salt, pepper, nutmeg and allspice. Cook the livers until they are browned but still slightly pinkish on the inside.
- Add the cognac and continue cooking until the majority of the cognac has been reduced and the livers are cooked through but still tender
- In a food processor or blender, puree the liver mixture adding the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter. When the butter is fully incorporated, add the heavy cream and continue blending until smooth.
- Press the liver mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a medium size bowl
- Divide the pate into ramekins leaving room for a 1/4 inch layer of gelee and set aside.
- In a medium-small, microwave safe bowl add a 1/4 cool water and sprinkle gelatin over the top. allow the gelatin to bloom for 10 minutes.
- Microwave the gelatin mixture until it is completely dissolved and becomes clear, approximately 30 seconds.
- Add the sugar to the warm gelatin and stir to dissolve. There shouldn't be any grittiness.
- Add the Prosecco and stir to combine.
- Place an herb sprig on top of each pate.
- Spoon a 1/4 inch layer of Prosecco gelee, liquid over the top of each pate. Make sure the herb sprigs are completely submerged
- Cover each ramekin with plastic wrap and refrigerate until the gelee is set, at least 3 hours
- Serve with cornichons and toast points
- Pate can be kept covered for up to 4 days
- Once the gelee seal is broken the pate will only keep for 1-2 days, covered
Adapted from Bon Appetite Magazine