Recipes for an Elegant Trio of Pâtés

Recipes for an Elegant Trio of Pâtés
Sometimes it's fun to serve something on the elegant side, especially at holiday parties such as New Years. That doesn’t mean, however, that you need to spend long hours in the kitchen. In fact, the following three delicious spreads can each be made in just a matter of minutes. They can be made ahead, too, which can be a big help to a busy hostess. ””

Mushroom and Chicken Liver Pâté

I can never understand why so many people turn their noses up at pâté; it is elegant and delicious. This version, a family recipe from my friend Megan, is actually a mousse, which is lighter than a true pâté; it is a much requested favorite of my catering clients and my friends.
Makes about 2 cups

2 tablespoons butter
1/2 pound chicken livers
1/4 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
1/4 cup onions, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup dry vermouth, or dry white wine
2 tablespoons port wine
1 clove garlic, mashed or minced
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
1/8 teaspoon rosemary, crumbled
1/8 teaspoon dried dill weed
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup softened butter
  1. Melt the butter in a frying pan; add the chicken livers, mushrooms, onions, and salt.

  2. Sauté, stirring occasionally, 3 minutes.

  3. Add vermouth or wine, port, and seasonings; cover and simmer until liver and mushrooms are tender, 3-4 minutes.
  4. Uncover and continue cooking until almost all the liquid has disappeared.

  5. Transfer to a food processor and process until smooth.

  6. Blend in the softened butter.

  7. Transfer to a serving dish, cover, and chill 8 hours or more.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 84 Calories from Fat 58
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 69% Protein 15% Carb. 6%

Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 6 g
Saturated Fat 4 g
Cholesterol 87 mg
Sodium 163 mg
Total Carbohydrate 1 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 3 g

Vitamin A 42% Vitamin C 4% Calcium 0% Iron 6%

Chestnut and Stilton Pâté

I first tasted this at a small pub in Brighton, near London. When they refused to give me the recipe, I went home and worked on several variations until I came up with this one; I think it's actually better than theirs.
Makes about 3 cups

10 ounces chestnuts (available already roasted and peeled in Asian grocery stores- 5 ounce packages)
1/2 cup Caramelized Onions, (packed)
1/2 to 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon beef bouillon granules or paste
10 ounces Stilton cheese, crumbled, or substitute gorgonzola or blue
5 tablespoons butter, softened
Additional crumbled Stilton cheese
Chopped fresh parsley
  1. Place the chestnuts in the bowl of a food processor.

  2. Add the caramelized onions and pulse until finely chopped.

  3. Heat 1/2 cup of the heavy cream and mix in the beef bouillon.

  4. With the motor running, gradually add the cream to the chestnut mixture; add more if necessary to make a smooth spreadable consistency.

  5. Add the cheese and butter; process until smooth.

  6. Scoop the mixture into a serving bowl.
  7. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours.
  8. Garnish with additional crumbled Stilton and chopped parsley.

  9. Serve with buttered whole wheat toast strips, Melba toast, or crackers

Amount Per Serving
Calories 106 Calories from Fat 70
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 66% Protein 10% Carb. 23%

Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 8 g
Saturated Fat 5 g
Cholesterol 22 mg
Sodium 198 mg
Total Carbohydrate 6 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 3 g

Vitamin A 5% Vitamin C 8% Calcium 0% Iron 1%

Smoked Salmon Mousse

Not only is this perfect as a spread on bread and crackers, it is great piped on cucumber slices and spread on small canapés. It takes only about 5 minutes to put together.
Makes about 2 cups

4 ounces smoked salmon
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 8 oz. package cream cheese
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
Additional dill weed for garnish
  1. Place the salmon and heavy cream in the food processor and process until smooth.

  2. Add the remaining ingredients and process.

  3. Transfer to a serving dish; sprinkle with dill weed.

  4. Serve with crackers or crusty bread.

Amount Per Serving
Calories 44 Calories from Fat 36
Percent Total Calories From: Fat 81% Protein 15% Carb. 4%

Nutrient Amount per Serving
Total Fat 4 g
Saturated Fat 2 g
Cholesterol 13 mg
Sodium 123 mg
Total Carbohydrate 0 g
Dietary Fiber 0 g
Sugars 0 g
Protein 2 g

Vitamin A 3% Vitamin C 1% Calcium 0% Iron 1%

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