This little amuse bouche can easily be served as an appetizer or an hors d’oeuvres (or even part of a tapas dinner). I left the paté a coarse texture this time to play against the smoothness of the sauce. The sauce was a last minute substitution as JT made it for dinner on Thursday night (Roger Mookings recipe, Food Network, Everyday Exotic) – I just loved the subtle sweetness and the bang of heat at the very end. It really complimented the Asian flavours in the Paté.
Country Chicken Liver Paté on Grilled Garlic Croustini with Papaya Sauce
- 3 chicken livers, cleaned and minced finely (you may also use your food processor if this grosses you out, just pulse a couple of times)
- 3 medium porchini mushrooms medium coarsely chopped (you may also use wild mushrooms which will add an earthier flavour)
- 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
- 2 cloves garlic finely minced (we try to buy garlic grown in the States or better yet, Canada – we try to avoid Chinese garlic as they are picked too young and ripen in their container travel – no flavour!)
- 1 tsp Chinese five spice (I made my own mix, but you may use the store bought kind)
- 1 tbsp Mirin (Japanese Rice Wine)
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 tsp olive oil
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Melt 1 tbsp butter with the olive oil in a frying pan. Add the onions and cook about 1/2 way, add the mushrooms (mushrooms will release quite a bit of liquid, but don’t worry)
- Add the chicken livers and cook through.
- Add the garlic, Chinese Five Spice and cook until you can really smell the aromas. Add the mirin, salt and pepper and the remaining 1 tbsp butter (melt the butter).
- Mix thoroughly and allow to cool slightly.
- Line a very small loaf pan (or ramekin) with plastic wrap. Press the paté into the form tightly. Refrigerate. This paté gets better with age, so you may want to make it in advance.
- See assembly instructions below.
Grilled Garlic Croustini
- Four 1 cm thick slices of the best bread in the world (JT’s, of course!)
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and cut in half (make sure one half is large enough to hold onto)
- Grill both sides of the bread until slightly chard, but toasted.
- Rub garlic over one side really well, repeat to each slice.
- Set aside.
Papaya Puré (this is an adaptation of Roger Mookings BBQ sauce from Everyday Exotic)
- 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 cup sweet onion, finely diced
- 2 tbsp sugar (taste the papaya, you may wish to add more)
- 1 green chili pepper, pith and seeds removed and quartered
- zest and juice of 1 limes
- zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup seasoned rice wine vinegar
- 2 cups papaya, large dice
- 1 teaspoons salt
- Cook onion in the olive oil until translucent and not brown.
- Add sugar, chili pepper, zest of limes and lemon, and stir until sugar disolves.
- Add water, juice from lemon, limes and vinegar.
- Bring to a boil and add papaya and salt.
- Allow to simmer for 15 minutes.
- Using a blender, puree until smooth. You may push this through a fine sieve for a creamy consistency, but it’s not absolutely necessary.
- Serve warm or cool.
- Drizzle the papaya sauce on the plate, making sure there is enough to be able to dip the croustini into.
- Slice paté into 1 cm slice and lay carefully on one croustini.