King of Country Pate

Total Time:
26 hr 30 min
24 hr
2 hr 30 min

1 loaf or 18 appetizers

  • 1 pound plus 1-ounce lean veal or chicken
  • 8 ounces lean pork
  • 14 ounces fatback
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/2 cup applejack, calvados, or brandy
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 4 ounces chicken livers, trimmed
  • 1 tablespoon pureed garlic
  • 1/4 cup brandy
  • 2 1/2 bay leaves
  • 1 slice day-old white bread, crusts removed
  • 2 teaspoons ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 3 small eggs
  • 1/2 pound bacon, sliced
  • 1/4 pound baked ham
  • 1/4 pound pickled tongue
  • 4 bay leaves for garnish
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled
  • Trim veal or chicken and pork of excess fat and tendons. Skin fatback. Cut into 1 inch cubes and pass through largest hole of a meat grinder. Transfer to a large bowl. Stir in salt, pepper, and applejack. Cover with plastic wrap touching the mixture and refrigerate at least 1 day or as long as 3.

  • After marinating, heat oil in a medium skillet over high heat. Saute livers until well browned, about 1 minute per side. Remove from pan and set aside to cool. Add garlic and cook about 1/2 minute, being careful not to let it color. Reserve garlic with liver.

  • Add brandy and bay leaves to same skillet. Scrape bottom of pan to loosen brown bits and cook over low heat until warm, about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool and remove and discard bay leaves.

  • Dip white bread in warm water to soften. Squeeze out excess moisture. Add to the liver and garlic along with 2 cups marinated ground meat, allspice, nutmeg, and brandy. Stir to combine.

  • Transfer to a food processor, add eggs, and puree until a smooth paste is formed. This paste will bind the pate. Place puree in a large bowl, add remaining ground meat, and combine well. (We recommend using your hands, not a spoon, to combine this dense mixture.)

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

  • Line a 9 by 5 by 3 inch glass or ceramic loaf pan with bacon slices so they overhang lengthwise, about 3 inches on each end. Slice ham and tongue into 4 by 1/2 by 1/2 inch julienne strips.

  • Spread about a cup of pate evenly over the bacon to cover the bottom. Arrange alternating strips of ham and tongue lengthwise, over the pate. Repeat this procedure, alternating pate with strips

  • of ham and tongue, until pan is filled and top layer is pate. (When the loaf is sliced you will see a regular pattern of solids and pate.) Fold overhanging bacon over the top. (The pate may rise slightly over the top of the pan. That's OK.)

  • Tap pan against a counter to firmly pack. Garnish top with bay leaves and garlic cloves. Cover with 2 layers aluminum foil, tucking edges under to completely seal. Place inside a larger pan and pour in boiling water until it rises halfway up the sides of the pate. Bake 2 hours 15 minutes. Set aside to cool.

  • Place cooled pate on a baking sheet and cover with another baking sheet. Top with some 3 pounds of weights (canned goods or milk cartons are good) and refrigerate overnight or as long as 2 weeks. This compacts the pate and makes it easier to slice.

  • To serve, remove and discard the bay leaf and garlic garnish. To loosen, dip pan's bottom in warm water and run a knife along inside edges. Invert onto a serving platter. Cut into 1/2 inch slices and serve on lettuce leaves.

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