Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Daring Cooks' Pâtés and Bread

Our hostesses this month, Evelyne of Cheap Ethnic Eatz, and Valerie of a The Chocolate Bunny, chose delicious pate with freshly baked bread as their June Daring Cook’s challenge! They’ve provided us with 4 different pate recipes to choose from and are allowing us to go wild with our homemade bread choice.

Ooops, i'm a day late for the challenge :( Life has been so busy these days that i just can't find the time and will to blog. JLo's graduating and he's busy packing and shipping his 5 years of junk away. Seeing his room empty out day by day makes me even more sad to do anything else, SIGHHHH, this sucks. We're both heading back to TW this weekend and thus starts our 1 year long-distance relationship, we'll see how that goes :(

On a brighter note, I was really excited when this months' Daring Cooks' challenge was revealed because one of my favorite bloggers, Valerie, whom i have followed for quite some time is the co-host! Valerie and Evelyne gave us many recipes for Pates to choose from and I went with a double-layered Vegetable Pâté (no pesto layer) and the Chicken Liver Terrine. Growing up in a Taiwanese household meant that chicken livers or any type of animal organs wasn't going to gross me out-- making AND tasting the Pâté was no problem for me! JLo also shared some with one of his friends and he told us that Pâté, or called "Pasztet" in Poland, is also very commonly eaten in Polish households. He said it tasted very much like the ones his grandmother makes! So thanks, Valerie and Evelyne, for sharing this awesome recipe with us!

Chicken Liver Terrine
Yields one 25 by 12,5 cm (10 by 5 inch) terrine or loaf pan
  • 1 tbsp duck fat, or butter
  • 2 onions, coarsely chopped
  • 300g (11 oz) chicken livers, trimmed
  • 3 tbsp brandy, or any other liqueur (optional)
  • 100g (3 1/2 oz, 1/2 cup) smoked bacon, diced
  • 300g (11 oz) boneless pork belly, coarsely ground
  • 200g (7 oz) boneless pork blade (shoulder), coarsely ground (or ground pork see note below)
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 1 tsp quatre-épices (or 1/4tsp each of ground pepper, cloves, nutmeg and ginger is close enough)
  • 2 eggs
  • 200 ml (7 fl oz, 3/4 cup + 2 tbsp) heavy cream
  • 2 fresh thyme sprigs, chopped
  • Salt and pepper
    NOTE: If you cannot find ground pork belly or blade, buy it whole, cut it into chunks, and pulse in the food processor. You can also replace the pork blade with regular ground pork
  1. Preheat oven to 200ºC (400ºF, Gas Mark 6).
  2. Melt the fat or butter in a heavy frying pan over low heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, until softened. Add the chicken livers and cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes, until browned but still slightly pink on the inside [picture 1].
  3. Remove the pan from heat. Pour in the brandy, light a match and carefully ignite the alcohol to flambé. Wait for the flames to go out on their own, carefully tilting the pan to ensure even flavoring [picture 2]. Set aside.
  4. Put the minced pork belly and blade in a food processor, then add the onion-liver mixture and the chopped shallots, and pulse until you obtain a homogenous mixture – make sure not to reduce it to a slurry [picture 3, 4].
  5. Transfer to a bowl, and gradually stir in the chopped bacon, quatre-épices, cream, eggs, and thyme. Season with salt and pepper, and mix well [picture 5]. Spoon the mixture into a terrine or loaf pan, and cover with the terrine lid or with aluminum foil [picture 6].
  6. Prepare a water bath: place the loaf pan in a larger, deep ovenproof dish (such as a brownie pan or a baking dish). Bring some water to a simmer and carefully pour it in the larger dish. The water should reach approximately halfway up the loaf pan.
  7. Put the water bath and the loaf pan in the oven, and bake for 2 hours. Uncover and bake for another 30 minutes. The terrine should be cooked through, and you should be able to slice into it with a knife and leave a mark, but it shouldn’t be too dry. Refrigerate, as this pâté needs to be served cold. Unmold onto a serving platter, cut into slices, and serve with bread.
  8. NOTE: This pâté freezes well. Divide it into manageable portions, wrap tightly in plastic film, put in a freezer Ziploc bag, and freeze. Defrost overnight in the fridge before eating.
Chicken Liver Terrine


Vegetable Pâté
Yields one 25 by 12,5 cm (10 by 5 inch) terrine or loaf pan
1. Line your pan with plastic wrap, overlapping sides.

White Bean Layer
  • 2 x 15-ounce / 900 ml cans cannellini (white kidney beans), rinsed, drained thoroughly
  • 1 tbsp / 15 ml fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp / 15 ml olive oil
  • 1 tbsp / 15 ml minced fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 2 garlic cloves, pressed
2. Mash beans in large bowl. Add lemon juice, olive oil, oregano and garlic and blend until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Spread bean mixture evenly on bottom of prepared pan [picture 1, 2].

Red Pepper Layer
  • 7-ounce / 210 ml jar roasted red bell peppers, drained, chopped
  • 3/4 cup / 180 ml crumbled feta cheese (about 4 ounces)
3. Combine peppers and feta in processor and blend until smooth. Spread pepper mixture evenly over bean layer in prepared dish [picture 3, 4].

4. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

5. To unmold, invert pâté onto serving platter. Peel off plastic wrap from pâté. Garnish with herb sprigs and serve with sourdough bread slices.


Peter Reinhart's French Bread

I stumbled across this wonderful recipe through Judes' Apple pie, Patis, and Pâté. The recipe can also be found in Peter Reinhart’s The Bread Baker’s Apprentice.

Homemade French Bread


  1. It all looks wonderful! Great job on the challenge!

  2. Yumm...that chicken liver terrine looks good! Your bread looks delicious! Great job!

  3. Both pates and the bread look scruptious! Glad you were able to make and enjoy the challenge with all that has been going on recently. Great job!

  4. Oh I love your bread! The cut you made was just perfect I think. And Gosh, your chicken pate looks so good and not fattening at all!! envy :(

    Don't worry at all about the long distance thing, you guys sound sooooo for each other. Me and my husband were also long distance, Chile and Taiwan, see where we're now! :) All you need is Skype, Headphone and Mic.

  5. I have been showing your food processor picture to my husband, hope he gets me hint! LOL

  6. Wow! YUM! I've got to try this! Great blog!

    Delightful Bitefuls

  7. Aaaah, there is it! I'm glad you enjoyed the challenge - and weren't grossed out by the liver! The bread looks great, and the liver pâté is lovely and creamy! I wish you the best of luck for the year ahead - long-distance relationships can be hard. Hang in there!

  8. Both your pates turned out superb, but I'm not surprised! Love how you double layered the veggie pate, and you totally rocked Reinhart's french bread! Fantastic job as always!

  9. i'm very impressed... and sorry to hear about the long-distance thing, but i bet it will work out in the end

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