26 November 2012

Easy Thanksgiving Liver Paté

Thanksgiving Liver Paté 1

Well hello everyone!  I sheepishly admit it has been quite a while since I've last posted here...and oh, how I've missed it!  The past half year has been an utter whirlwind of adventure, traipsing about the world for work, from Korea to Singapore to Germany to New York, with welcome breaks every now and then in California.  I've seen countless national treasures throughout Korea, sat next to rock stars, met with world-renowned doctors, switched companies, been thwacked in the nose by a Hong Kong waiter, leveled up a time or two in my frequent flier program, and eaten my way around Taipei.  It's been a life-changing season of discovery and growth, no doubt about it, and it's been a life that just six months ago I'd never have dreamt of experiencing.

Thanksgiving Liver Paté 3

With so much change, travel, and cross-cultural immersion in so short a time, I've been all the more grateful for the chance to return to my parents' home in Santa Barbara to catch my breath, rest, and celebrate Thanksgiving with my family this past week before I return to my new home and new company in Korea.

Thanksgiving Liver Paté 4

And though it's been a while since I've been able to do much cooking, once I got into the familiar kitchen, with all my favorite cooking tools at my fingertips, I slowly warmed back up (okay, getting burned by the oven a couple times in the process) and figured out I hadn't forgotten how to cook!

Thanksgiving Liver Paté 6

One of my favorite things I made this past week was this easy liver paté.  Do you ever wonder what to do with the giblets after cleaning your Thanksgiving turkey?  My family's never really been into the giblet gravy thing, so we often end up tossing these odds and ends.  But when I saw the gorgeous, plump liver from our turkey this year, I had the sudden urge to transform it into a luscious paté.  Foie gras might be out of the picture here in California right now, but there's nothing stopping you from making a tasty (and may I add, a very nutritious) poultry paté!

Thanksgiving Liver Paté 7

While many patés rely on animal fat for a smooth and glossy texture, I forgo much of the fat here and instead add a generous amount of soft-cooked onion.  You'll love the flavor and the fact that this paté is good for you through and through!

Easy Thanksgiving Liver Paté

Scant 1 Tbs. butter
1/4 onion, finely chopped (about 1/3 cup)
1/3 cup raw poultry livers
2 Tbs. brandy or cognac
finely ground sea salt and black pepper
finely ground nutmeg

In a small skillet, sweat the chopped onion in butter until translucent, then add the raw liver and sauté until cooked through (I kept the lid on for the sweating and for the sautéeing to help things cook evenly through).  Add the brandy and stir, raising heat to boil off alcohol and evaporate all liquid.

Transfer the liver mixture to a small blender (or narrow bowl--as I used an immersion stick blender to more easily blend this small volume) and blend until smooth.  Season to taste with finely ground salt and pepper, and a smidgen of finely ground nutmeg.  Cover the paté and refrigerate until chilled.

Serving suggestions: This easy liver paté is delicious eaten simply spread on slices of baguette.  But you can add marinated artichokes, pickles, or other briny vegetables alongside for a tasty appetizer, or you can include a generous layer in your next sandwich (I'm thinking it'd be fantastic as a part of these banh mi sandwiches)! :) Yummy pate in about 15 minutes!