“Cooking is not a particularly difficult art, and the more you cook and learn about cooking, the more sense it makes. But like any art it requires practice and experience. The most important ingredient you can bring to it is love of cooking for its own sake.”
Julia Child, Mastering the Art of French Cooking
Slowly but surely the good old chicken liver is gaining pack its popularity. For some time you would be hard pressed to find it on the menu, except in some fancy restaurant where food traditions are kept alive.
Of course here in the Middle East, chicken liver is readily found on menus. I am quite fond of the Egyptian version of chicken liver sauté. A bit heavy on cumin, with thick slices on onions …. but this is not what I am talking … writing about.
There was a time where there mere sight of this can would have sent shivers down my spine. Leber Aufstrich, ….. yes the ol’ chicken Liver pâté. You could have chased me to the ends of the world.
Now, much later, and familiar with the ways of the kitchen, I have come to appreciate the subtle nuances of this exquisite dish. There are as many recipes as cooks out there, and everybody swears by his or her recipe.
As for me I do prefer the ones where the chicken liver is the star of the flavour and not diluted with cream, but rather enhanced with fresh herbs and a spoon or to of GOOD Cognac.
Chicken Liver Pâté
- 200 g unsalted butter
- 1 cup finely chopped onion
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh marjoram
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh sage
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground allspice
- ½ kilo chicken liver, cleaned and trimmed
- 2 tablespoons Cognac
- Melt half the butter in a large skillet over low heat, then cook onion and garlic, stirring, until softened.
- Add herbs, salt, pepper, allspice, and livers and cook, stirring, until livers are cooked outside but still pink when cut open.
- Stir in Cognac and remove from heat.
- Purée mixture in a food processor until smooth, then fill pâté into glasses or ceramic dishes and smoothen top.
- Melt remaining butter in a very small heavy saucepan over low heat, then remove pan from heat and let butter stand for a couple of minutes.
- Skim froth from butter, then spoon enough clarified butter over pâté to cover its surface, leaving milky solids in bottom of pan.
- Chill pâté until butter is firm, about 30 minutes, then cover with plastic wrap and chill for 24 hours before serving.
- Serve with caramelised onions.
I had it today with fresh baguette. But together with my Pumpernickel, which rocks (by the way), … and this pâté, …. hey ….
…. Rock n’ Roll