THE PER­FECT . . .

Chicken liver pate

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Life - - CONTENT - by Car­ren Simp­son

T he worst thing you can do with pate is over­cook

the liv­ers. Home cooks are in fear of killing ev­ery­one if they don’t cook the liv­ers through, but I’ve never killed any­one yet! Just sear the liv­ers in a re­ally hot pan. They will go grainy if

you over­cook them. I use clar­i­fied but­ter on the pan. It burns less eas­ily than reg­u­lar but­ter. Al­ways add but­ter to the hot pan, in­stead of heat­ing the pan and the but­ter to­gether — oth­er­wise

the but­ter will split. The most im­por­tant part of the recipe is the deglaz­ing of the pan, with a re­duc­tion of red onions, gar­lic, fresh thyme and brandy. This goes into the pan af­ter the liv­ers come out, and you add some cream to it be­fore putting ev­ery­thing in the blender, where you blitz it to

a thick, glossy tex­ture with a ruby-red colour. Don’t be scared of the colour; the liv­ers will con­tinue to cook with the heat from the other in­gre­di­ents and the heat

from the blender. Then you slowly add more melted clar­i­fied but­ter. Set the blender at a low speed and add it grad­u­ally, as you

would when you’re mak­ing may­on­naise. Too much liq­uid at once will make it sep­a­rate. Go­ing slowly al­lows the liv­ers to ab­sorb the liq­uid and makes a vel­vety pate. Then pass it through a sieve and check the sea­son­ing.

Be­cause you are serv­ing it cold, it will take more sea­son­ing. So if you can barely taste the sea­son­ing when

the pate is warm, add a bit more. Car­ren Simp­son is head chef at The Gar­den House cafe, Back Road, Malahide, Co Dublin, tel: (01) 531-2020, or see the­gar­den­house.ie

In con­ver­sa­tion with Sarah Caden

250g (9oz) clar­i­fied but­ter 1 medium red onion, chopped 2 cloves of gar­lic, chopped Hand­ful of thyme leaves 100ml (3 fl oz) brandy 600g (1 lbs) chicken liv­ers Salt and freshly ground black pep­per 300ml (10fl oz) dou­ble cream

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