Chicken liver & pineau pâté

Chicken liver & pineau pâté

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(22 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 10 mins Plus chilling


Serves 6-8 as a snack or starter
A rich, sweet pâté recipe using pineau - a sherry-like aperitif - great as a dinner party starter.

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal263
  • fat20g
  • saturates11g
  • carbs1g
  • sugars0g
  • fibre0g
  • protein18g
  • salt0.95g
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  • 500g chicken livers
  • 100g butter



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 100g unsmoked lardons or chopped streaky bacon
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed or finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves or 1 tsp dried


    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…

  • 5 tbsp pineau or sherry
  • herb sprigs to garnish, rosemary, thyme or bay
  • toasted brioche or raisin bread and cornichons, to serve


  1. Rinse the chicken livers and cut away any dark patches and small stringy threads. Pat dry with kitchen paper. Heat 25g of the butter in a frying pan until foaming, then add the lardons or bacon and fry until crisp. Add the garlic, chicken livers and thyme and fry briskly for about 5 mins, until they are evenly browned. They should be nicely browned on the outside, but pink inside and should feel squashy when pressed.

  2. Add the pineau, salt and pepper, then bubble for a few mins. Remove from the heat. Blitz the mixture in a food processor until smooth, then spoon into a jar or dish. Smooth the top.

  3. Melt the remaining butter, put a herb sprig or bay leaf on top of the pâté and pour over the butter, leaving the sediment behind. Leave to cool, then chill until set.4 Serve spooned from the dish with toasted brioche, a bowl of cornichons and a little sea salt.

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Comments (32)

lindapalmer1's picture

Made this for the first time, but added 3 cloves of garlic & 2 tbsp double cream and brandy, absolutely brilliant, served with toast & homemade damson chutney. Well worth the effort.

eleanormayo's picture

This pate was great, I took it to a party and it was a real hit. As it is Christmas, I substituted the sherry for port.

emilycraig14's picture

best pate ever! better without the butter though

same965's picture

I used sherry and it was very delicious. I'll make it again surely.

abigailhiggs's picture

I attempted making this, but after 5 minutes my livers were still bleeding and I wasn't sure if they were meant to, being a poultry product I was worried about the risk of food poisoning. When my livers stopped bleeding they were overcooked and did not maker nice pate at all. Really disappointed.

bdainer's picture

Superb. Highly rated by all dinner guests, one who said was the best she'd ever had. How long can you keep pate before it expires?

vhoracek's picture

Waddy: yes, port works perfectly.

vhoracek's picture

Delicious! Needs much more garlic (3 cloves) though. Adding 2-3 spoons of double cream makes it extra smooth.

waddy1's picture

Has anyone tried using Port for this pate? Not sure if it'll work or not!

sparklygibbo's picture

Have made this a few times for people coming for dinner. This is a great starter for a dinner party - you can make it in advance and you can adapt it to your own taste. I have made it with Brandy which is also suitable. I add more garlic to my pate and i also add shallots. Very nice and always complimented on it. If you have never made this before, give it a go. Its definitely worth trying.

tonedeaf's picture

The combination of pate, brioche and cornichons was truly delicious. Used Marsala wine as I couldn't get Pineau. Very easy and impressive dinner party starter.

janethwaites's picture

Very straight forward chicken liver pate, like the inclusion of the Pineau, followed recipe exactly, took very little time to make, and keeps in fridge well for several days.

stargazers's picture

This was so easy, great to use up some garden herbs and this recipe made 3 ramekin sized dishes, so very cheap to make. Have been told it was the best pate ever ! Will be making again, as well as other pates rather than buying them from now on. So tasty served cold on warm french bread or toast. Yum yum yum!

ericathefirst's picture

I couldn't be more pleased with how this turned out, very simple to do and it tastes great. I'll definitely make this again.

boistizon's picture

This is by far the easiest pate recipe I have ever done, and it was absolutely delicious! I added two tablespoons of double cream when I was blending it, it made it creamier and lighter in colour - a sure fire hit for any dinner party!!

hilger's picture

First time that I have made pate, so simple but tasted superb; so much better than store bought. Used some left over cooking brandy instead of pineau or sherry also used three or more cloves of garlic. Will make again.

adamjt8's picture

Absolutely gorgeous, made it with port as had no sherry and was amazing. So so easy to make and a fraction of the cost of shop bought pate, I'll never buy pate again! x

birdie7's picture

I made this last week and everybody really loved this I also added more garlic and added brandy. Found the sieving hard work to make it smooth but worth the effort. Will definately be used next time when I have friends round.

adamjt8's picture

This is the first time I've made pate and can't believe how easy and delicious it was. Will definately become a firm favourite recipe. Have made it 3 times and used red wine in one batch and port in another as well as the sherry in the recipe and all 3 batches were equally as delicious.

brownr1's picture

I think it needs more garlic and herbs. Mine didn't turn out very well: it was very dark in colour with a dryish, pasty texture. I must have over-cooked the livers although they were still pink. Anyone know what level of pinkness is safe? If the juices are slightly red still is that ok?


Questions (3)

germdave's picture

Can this be made without the pork? Can anything be substituted for it, or will it be fine without?

Lawless40's picture

Would anyone know how many people this recipe serves?

goodfoodteam's picture

Hi there. This recipe serves 6-8 as a snack or starter. Hope you enjoy it! Best wishes, BBC Good Food web team

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