While eating chicken liver pate on perfect toast points at Left Bank in St. Petersburg, FL with a friend I admitted that I make Curried Chicken Liver Pate one time each year at Christmas and that only one person I know, Mr. Jeff Pearl, will eat it.
I explained that pate is the easiest, most decadent thing to make – kinda like a cheesecake – and I ran down the procedure for him in 15 seconds. Next thing I knew I was texting him a shopping list and I was on deck to make the curried pate for dinner. Pate twice in one day and a new friend who will eat it. What luck!
Not only is pate easy to make, it is cheap. Chicken livers, available at most grocery stores, are crazy affordable: almost $2 per pound and the rest of the ingredients, my friend noted, were bargain basement, too. Onion, garlic, butter, salt, pepper, curry powder, baguette of bread plus some spinach on the side and we were in deep – almost $7 deep at this point. Here is the process:
Melt 3 tbs. butter in a sauté pan and sweat one chopped onion, 3 cloves of garlic and 2 tbs curry powder over a low flame until translucent. Add a splash of water or cream and 1 pound chicken livers (clean the connective tissue for a velvety-smooth pate) to the pan and cook 3-5 minutes until no longer pink. Allow mixture to cool and place in a food processor and blend until smooth. Transfer to a serving dish or ramekin and chill. Serve with sliced and toasted baguette medallions or crackers.
As with most savory, onion-y, garlic-y dishes (think lasagna and Thanksgiving stuffing) pate is better the longer it sits.
Of all the iron-rich foods, liver is the top performer as other food even comes close to it for iron content. I once had a patient over at St. Joseph’s with chronic anemia. She said when she started to feel run down she would sauté chicken livers and onions and gobble them up and as they hit her system she would feel instantly better. Psychosomatic? Her story, not mine but I’m sticking to it.
The bottom line: if a food improves your life, eat it. Conversely, if a food makes you feel like crap, eliminate it. Even if it is liver and even if 99% of your friends will not eat it.