Chicken Liver Spread


I like to have a number of easy options available over the hoidays for guests who we invite over for a glass of holiday cheer, and find spreads and dips work perfectly. The method used to cook this liver pate, or mousse, creates a very creamy texture that is perfect for spreading onto slices of toasted bread or whole grain crackers. The spread has just a subtle liver flavor that is delicious when brandy and spices are added in, and is very similar to some liver spreads I’ve enjoyed while in Tuscany. I actually tripled my recipe when I made it, and made three separate crocks so I could freeze two to enjoy over the Christmas holidays. This delicious spread would also be a great hostess gift along with a bag of artisan seeded crackers.

Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele 2011

Creamy Tuscan Chicken Liver Spread

Baking the spread in the oven as you would a custard creates a very creamy texture.

Ingredients:

  • 3 Tablespoons Chopped Onion
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, Peeled & Minced
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1/2 Cup Brandy
  • 6 Ounces Trimmed Chicken Livers
  • 5 Large Egg Yolks
  • 1 Cup Whole Milk
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Flour
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Grted Nutmeg
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Allspice
  • Salt & Pepper

Topping: (Optional)

  • 6 Tablespoons Butter
  • 2 Fresh Bay Leaves

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a skillet, and cook the onions until lightly golden brown, then add the garlic and cook another minute or two.
  3. Remove from the heat and add the brandy and then return to the heat and cook until the brandy has reduced by half.
  4. Place the onion mixture in a food processor along with the chicken livers and egg yolks and blend until smooth.
  5. Add the milk, flour, nutmeg, allspice, salt and pepper and blend until well mixed.
  6. Pour the mixture into a crock large enough to hold it all, and then place the crock in a larger oven-proof pan filled halfway up the sides of the crock with water.
  7. Bake until the spread has set when a knife inserted into the center comes out clean, about 50 to 55 minutes.
  8. Remove from the water bath, and cool to room temperature.
  9. If making the topping, melt the butter in a small pan over low heat then let sit 5 minutes.
  10. Arrange the bay leaves onto the spread, and then spoon the clarified butter on top.
  11. Refrigerate the spread at least one hour before serving although it can be made up to 5 days in advance.