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June 2010 - Daring Cooks Challenge : Pâté

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.

This was my first Pate and I was really impressed how easy it was to make.  The hardest part for me was working with a mini prep instead of a proper food processor.  I had to grind up my pate in several separate batches.  It was messy and I was very glad that my Sous –Chef Aaron was there to help me mop up the madness that took over my small counter top.

This was very special challenge for me.  My Grandmother and Aunt Karen were visiting from Chicago, and this was the first time they got to taste some of my food.  I have cooked for them in the past but it was so long ago and I have learned so much since the last time they had anything I cooked or baked.  My mother hosted a nice sized party at her house and I decided to bring the pate and the homemade sourdough bread along.

When I unveiled the foil from the small loaf tins everyone gasped at the beautiful strips of bacon that seemed to invite everyone to want to try a little.  Leave it to bacon to get even the pickiest eaters to try something new.  I peeled one piece of bacon away and asked my Grandmother to smell it; she said “that smells Bohemian”.  We all laughed, and I smiled; it truly was a very special day.

You can find my sourdough bread recipe here; it comes in so handy to have a sourdough starter living on your kitchen counter.  I served my Pate with Dijon Mustard, Watercress, Radishes, and Cornichons.  I served my Grandmother and my Aunt some Pate first and they just loved it.  I made one round with all the toppings and then told everyone they were on their own.  My Dad loved the Cornichons, but he added that he would love to add some onions.

I plan on learning how to make other versions of Pate and upgrading my food processor so making an appetizer mid week for a weekend party should be a snap.  Not only will it be easy but it will be a cheap way to entertain.  I think I spent 6 dollars total on everything for this challenge.  I love this challenge because it can be made in advance, and it is actually better if you make it days in advance.  It is cheap, easy, and delectable!

Lastly I would like to clear a few things up about The Daring Kitchen.  I had some questions from some family and friends regarding the challenges, and one person even said do you challenger yourself??  Any way I was put off because these people must not read my blog.  If you would like to learn more about The Daring Kitchen please visit this link.  Daring Bakers’ and Cooks are a very large group of cooks and bakers that blog and every month we receive a challenge that usually is out of most of our cooking comfort zones.  It’s a great group and I was introduced to it by Sarah Belaire.  Thank you Sarah, you and your hubby rock.
  • 1 lb pork liver (or beef or combination) – I used only beef
  • 1/2 lb ground pork
  • 1/2 lb pork belly, or pork fat back
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 whole egg and 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp coriander (ground or crushed)
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 3/4 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1 Tbps coarse freshly cracked peppercorns
  • 2 Tbps cabernet sauvignon
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 pound of bacon


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Chop up the pork fat, liver, shallots and garlic.  If you are lucky enough to have a real food processor add the ground pork, pork fat, liver shallots, garlic, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, salt, and pepper blend till it is smooth.

Transfer liver mixture to a bowl and combine with the eggs and wine.  Line a loaf pan with bacon; I used two small loaf pans for a more petite presentation.


Place one bay leaf at the bottom of each loaf pan and then distribute the liver mixture evenly into pans.

Top each loaf with a bay leave and seal it with the over lapping bacon.

Place loaf pans in a large baking dish, fill the dish with water till the water covers two thirds of the pan.  Bake for an hour and half.  After they are done baking let them rest on a cooling rack for about 15 minutes.

After they have rested for 15 minutes cover them in foil. You are going to see a lot of grease and fat around the pate loafs, they will actually be floating in it.  The goal is to get the loafs submerged in the fat so the pate can soak it back up.  I stacked one loaf pan on top of the other and then placed a weight on top.  This seemed to work well.  I left them like that in my refrigerator for 2 days before serving.

To server remove the pate from the loaf pan.  I removed the bacon; however, you can leave the bacon on if you prefer.  Plate on a nice dish and serve with some nice sourdough bread and your favorite pate condiments.  Enjoy!


Mary said...

It looks wonderful, and great job doing it with a mini processor. I actually used a hand grinder, but only because I wanted to! My friends and family ask me lots of strange questions too!

Kara said...

Oh wow. I can't believe you made all of that with a mini-prep! :) Go you! It looks fabulous. I love pate and so does my guy - I'm only sad that I joined DC too late to participate in this challenge.

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