Happy Thanksgiving!

If you're anything like me, you are as busy as a cat on a hot tin roof trying to get your Thanksgiving festivities in order.  To that end, I'm thinking the last thing you have time to do is read a long blog post.  So!  Very short blog post punctuated with another recipe that you can make throughout the holiday season. 

Chicken livers are probably not at the top of many people's lists of favorite foods although we are in Oklahoma so it might be there.  Anywho...this is a decadent, complex flavor bomb of an appetizer that is not difficult to make and your guests will go crazy for it.  If I don't make it for Thanksgiving and Christmas, there is Mutiny on the Bounty (minus Humphrey Bogart).  This recipe is adapted from The Silver Palate Cookbook, the classic 1980's gem from the NYC gourmet shop of the same name.  Proprietors Sheila Lukens and Julie Rosso developed any number of superb recipes that still hold up today.  I think this is one of them.

This is my small way of saying:

I am thankful for all of you!  My readers and my students (you may be both) make my job not a job but sheer pleasure.  My business would be nothing without you.  I appreciate each and every one of you.  Thank you for your support and patronage.

So now...cook, eat, drink and be merry and enjoy your friends and family.  AKA don't get stressed out!  It's just food!!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Madeira Pate

Adapted from The Silver Palate

Makes about 2 cups

1 stick unsalted butter
½ cup chopped shallots
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp dried tarragon
1 tsp dried thyme
½ tsp dried rosemary
¼ tsp ground savory
2 quarts water
½ cup chopped leafy celery tops
12 whole black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
1 lb chicken livers, cleaned and rinsed
¼ cup Madeira
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp kosher salt
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

Melt butter in a medium covered sauté pan over medium heat.  Add shallots, garlic, tarragon, thyme, rosemary and savory.  Stir to combine.  Lower heat to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

Pour water into medium saucepan.  Add celery tops, peppercorns and bay leaves.  Bring to a boil then allow to simmer for 10 minutes.  Add chicken livers and simmer for 10 minutes until livers are barely pink and cooked through.  Drain and discard seasonings.

In the bowl of a food processor, pour Madeira and add allspice, salt and pepper.  Add shallot mixture and drained chicken livers.  Process until very smooth.  Pour into two-cup ramekin or bowl and chill.

Bring pate to room temperature.  Serve with sliced baguette and cornichons.