Chicken liver pâté – the star of your platter

Few things hold a candle to a really good chicken liver pâté and we think this recipe should definitely crack the nod for your next summer soirée. Pop it in the middle of the table, surrounded by a pile of melba toast or crisp bruschetta and let everyone tuck in. This fella can be made a few days in advance, which is super handy when your hostess-with-the-mostest duties come a calling. Stress, who needs it, eh?



Prep time: 40 mins | Cook time: 30 mins | Serves: 8–10 as a snack

1 onion, finely chopped
100g butter
3 cloves garlic, sliced
1 pinch allspice, ground in a pestle and mortar
6 rashers streaky bacon, sliced into thin strips (optional)
500g chicken livers
Thyme leaves
1 apple, peeled and grated
Juice and zest of 1 orange
3 Tbsp brandy (if you want a non alcoholic version, just replace this volume with more orange juice)
80g butter, melted
3–4 bay leaves and peppercorns


1. Place the onion in a frying pan with 100g butter. Cook over a medium heat until softened and the onions begin to caramelise, about 10–15 minutes.
2. Add lashings of freshly cracked, black pepper, slices of garlic, allspice and bacon strips, cook for another few minutes.
3. Next, clean the chicken livers to remove any green spots, etc. Add the chicken livers, thyme and apple to the pan and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. You don’t want the livers to crisp up, rather almost steam with the other bits and pieces.


4. Remove from the heat (they’ll still be a bit pink – that’s good) and allow them to cool slightly. Add the orange zest and juice and the brandy.
5. Place in a food processor and whizz to a smooth paste.
6. Spoon the paste into bowls, cover with melted butter, top with a bay leaf and some peppercorns, then place in the fridge to set.


And that’s how you make pâté at home. If you think you won’t eat the full batch in one sitting, you can also scoop your pâté into several smaller plastic containers and store in the freezer (you don’t need much airspace is it won’t be expanding much) until a batch is needed. Your top layer will have a greyish tinge when it is defrosted but just give the batch a good stir with a fork and you’re all set to top it with melted butter, peppercorns and bay leaves before serving.

Are you a pâté fan? Or do you think it’s all rather passé? Tell us your favourites, we’d love to hear.