In order to not buy a whole bunch of things we would only use a little of, we kept the topping for our sandwiches down to just what we felt was most important; mayo, pork, paté pickled carrots, cilantro & jalapenos. Though not traditional, I threw on some chopped scallions too since we had them. The main thing we skipped was the pickled radishes because we didn't want to buy a whole bunch to use just one or two.
I pickled the carrots myself using Emeril's quick pickle recipe. I just used a third of the brine & pickled one carrot. The only problem ingredient was the paté. The grocery store had a few choices but they were pretty expensive & way more paté then we needed. Ok, time to make our own. It was something we'd been wanting to do for awhile anyway.
I chose a very basic chicken liver paté recipe, which just also happened to be from Emeril, because other than the chicken livers I already had all the ingredients (ok, most of the ingredients). Even though it was my first time making paté I went ahead & made a few changes to the recipe, substituting some of the livers with brown mushrooms & green peppercorns with capers. I think both were good substitutes. The mushrooms tempered the liver flavor a little & the capers added a nice tang. At first taste Matt wasn't so sure he thought it was great but after a day or two letting the flavors meld in the fridge he really liked it & ate a whole bunch on bread with some cornichons.
Chicken Liver & Mushroom Paté
(adapted from Emeril Lagasse)
The livers have to soak for 2 hours before using them so plan ahead.
5 oz chicken livers, cleaned
1/2 c milk
4 T cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 c chopped yellow onions
1 t minced garlic
3 oz brown mushrooms, sliced
1 T capers, drained
1 bay leaf
1/2 t chopped fresh thyme leaves
1/4 t salt
1/4 t freshly ground black pepper
2 T brandy
Soak the chicken livers in the milk for 2 hours. Drain well.
In a large skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium-high heat. Add the onions & cook until translucent. Add the garlic & cook another 30 seconds. Stir in the chicken livers, mushrooms, capers, bay leaf, thyme, salt & pepper. Cook until the livers are browned on the outside, about 5 minutes. Add the brandy. Cook until almost all the liquid is gone. The livers should be cooked through. Remove from heat & let cool.
Remove the bay leaf & put the liver mixture into a food processor & puree. The paté will not get completely smooth but have a more rustic texture. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter a little at a time, pulsing with each addition. Put the paté into a bowl or ramekin & cover. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours before serving (We found it was better after a day or two).
Makes about 1 1/2 - 2 cups
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