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Friday, October 26, 2007

Winter treats - Oolong Chicken Liver Pâté

Oolong Chicken Liver Pâté
(Photo coming soon)


I adapted this recipe for a large event for Cornelia Bean. The herbs and fragrant tea make this a cozy treat or lovely for entertaining.

This silky-smooth pâté is inexpensive and simple to make. The chicken livers are briefly simmered in Oolong tea with aromatics before they’re blended with butter in a food processor.

1/2 pound chicken livers, well-trimmed
1/2 small onion, thinly sliced
1 small garlic clove, smashed and peeled
1/2 tsp. Ground Sage
1/4 teaspoon thyme leaves
Kosher salt
1/2 cup Oolong tea (infuse _ tsp in 1 cup boiling water)
1/2 - 2/3 cups butter
2 shots Scotch whiskey
Freshly ground pepper
Toasted baguette slices, for serving

In a medium saucepan, combine the chicken livers, onion, garlic, sage, thyme and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Add the Oolong and bring to a simmer. Cover, reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the livers are barely pink inside, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand, covered, for 5 minutes.

Using a slotted spoon, transfer the livers, onion and garlic to a food processor; process until coarsely pureed. With the machine on, add the butter, 2 tablespoons at a time, until incorporated. Add the Cognac, season with salt and pepper and process until completely smooth. Scrape the pâté into 2 or 3 large ramekins. Press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the pâté and refrigerate until firm. Serve chilled.

If using gelatin sheets to top the Pâté, Grind 2 tsp. Oolong tea and cook in 1/2 cup water. Add 2-3 Gelatin sheets and melt. Pour over Pâté and chill over night. If using melted butter, make sure that the Pâté is completely covered. This can be enjoyed from the refrigerator for 1 week or can be frozen for up to 2 months.


Monday, October 01, 2007

Guinea Fowl with Port Cherry Sauce

Milk fed Guinea Fowl Breast in pancetta with a port cherry sauce

Certainly a very special treat for an entrée, this very tender and moist fowl is available on request from DeLuca’s. One package was a nice size for two entrées. This recipe includes the cherry port sauce which can be used in a variety of dishes. As this is an expensive delicacy, try the recipe substituting the Guinea Fowl for Duck, Goose or Turkey Breast or rabbit pieces, also available at DeLuca’s. Please note, this recipe is for a boneless piece of meat. If using meat with bones in, please reduce heat and increase cooking time. For the port, try a tawny or ruby variety. I used a De Bortoli 8 year old Tawny Port for this recipe.

1 pkg Milk Fed Guinea Fowl Breast.*
100 grams pancetta slices*
1 tbs butter
1tsp olive oil*
Freshly ground pepper
port to deglaze pan

For the Sauce:
1/2 cup dried sour Okanagan Cherries*
3/4 cup + port
2 shallots, finely chopped*
1 tbs butter
1 tbs olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 small sprig fresh rosemary, rosemary*

Wrap the Guinea Fowl breast in pancetta and then wrap in plastic wrap and set aside in the refrigerator for a few hours. When ready to cook, heat skillet on medium high heat and add butter and olive oil. Place pancetta wrapped meat in the centre of the pan and brown. Add freshly ground black pepper to dish. Turn after a few minutes and season with pepper again. When cooked through, add port to pan on top of entrée. Allow to reduce and turn breast again, adding another splash of port. Remove entrée from pan and allow to rest. Plate entrée and spoon some of the cherry sauce on the plate.

Soak the dried cherries in port for at least 30 minutes. Heat a small saucepan on medium heat and add butter and olive oil. When butter has melted, add chopped shallots and chopped rosemary. When softened, add cherries with port and cook to reduce. Add salt and pepper. With an immersion blender or in a blender, puree sauce until smooth. Return to saucepan and add more port if sauce is too thick.

*Available at DeLuca’s