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Chicken Liver Pâté with Pancetta & Calvados

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Serves six to eight.

This quick and luscious pâté can easily be made in a smaller quantity with just the livers found inside of one chicken. Rabbit or duck liver works equally well, and another brandy or a good balsamic vinegar can substitute for the Calvados.

  • 8 oz. fresh chicken livers
  • 2 tsp.olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • 3 oz. pancetta, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 1/4 tsp. finely chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/4 cup Calvados (apple brandy)
  • 3 oz. (6 Tbs.) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Crostini or crackers, for serving

Rinse the livers, trim off the tough tissue that connects the two lobes, and pat the livers dry. In a nonstick sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat and add the chicken livers, seasoning with a small amount of salt. Cook the livers, turning, to medium rare (they’ll continue to cook as they cool), lightly browning on all sides, about 4 minutes. Set the livers aside and add the pancetta, shallots, and thyme to the pan. Gently sauté over medium heat until the pancetta is slightly colored and the shallots are softened. Add the Calvados and deglaze the pan, scraping with a wooden spoon and cooking until the Calvados is reduced to about 1 Tbs.; set aside to cool slightly. Put the cooled livers, pancetta- shallot mixture, and butter in a food processor and process until well blended. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Put the spread into a ramekin or small bowl, lightly covering the top with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until set. Grind more pepper over the top before serving with crostini or crackers.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : based on eight servings; Calories (kcal): 150; Fat (g): fat g 12; Fat Calories (kcal): 100; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 6; Protein (g): protein g 7; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 4; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 3; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 250; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 155; Fiber (g): fiber g 0;

Photo: Martha Holmberg & Steve Hunter

Just made the pate. It taste delicious. Can wait until tomorrow. Just a note do not add too much salt.

We raise meat chickens for our family, and we have pondered what to do with the large bag of livers leftover. Now we ponder no longer, and probably eat more chicken liver (and butter!) than we should. I haven't been able to find Calvados at our local grocery store, but regular cognac has worked just fine. Delicious! It tastes better as time goes on (which is actually quite helpful, since it's better enjoyed once you've forgotten the visual of the large bag of chicken livers).

We raise meat chickens for our family, and we have pondered what to do with the large bag of livers leftover. Now we ponder no longer, and probably eat more chicken liver (and butter!) than we should. I haven't been able to find Calvados at our local grocery store, but regular cognac has worked just fine. Delicious! It tastes better as time goes on (which is actually quite helpful, since it's better enjoyed once you've forgotten the visual of the large bag of chicken livers).

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