I am, admittedly, really surprised I’m sharing this recipe today.
It took about 5 different attempts at liver paté before I finally stopped gagging when eating it. It usually ended up as dog food cause you know if I was gagging, the husband was definitely not eating it. Since I’ve been known to eat some pretty odd or gross things, by most people’s standards.
I was frustrated, since I stubbornly want to conquer all the things, which includes loving organ meats. So I began googling “how to love liver.” I know, right? Don’t worry, I’m just as surprised as you at the things I admit here publicly.
Deep in a forum somewhere, it was mentioned that low fat patés are definitely harder to swallow (pun intended). So with my next batch, I was determined to throw alllll the fats in and switch them up a bit to both dilute the liver flavor and give it a bit more depth.
With every consecutive batch, I’ve seen improvements. At first I was only relying on ghee. But since switching it up to a varied array of fat, I’ve found that I can finally say I love liver paté. Ta-daaa!
Seriously though, the bone marrow is a game changer. And my thinking is that if the texture of marrow bothers you (yes, it’s a bit jiggly), this is one of the best ways to hide it.
It probably goes without saying that the nutrients in this paté are off the charts. It has the perfect balance of fat IMO. Just enough to whip up really creamy, like a fluffy butter, and to offset the sometimes mineral-y taste of liver. In fact, it’s really, really mild compared to my earlier batches.
My favorite way to enjoy it: just about 1/4 cup scooped straight out of the container with a sprinkling of coarse sea salt. It sounds crazy but I really don’t NEED to dip anything in to enjoy it. It’s best about mid-afternoon if I feel tired of find myself craving food despite not being that hungry (PMS, you know?). I scoop a couple of bites and I’m golden. Of course, you can also dip cucumbers, which are a great cool/crisp balance to the fat. Or something even funner like the parsnip chips pictured here!
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Bacon, Bone Marrow & Liver Paté
Cook time: 1 hour
Yields: about 4 cups paté
4 slices thick-cut bacon
1/2 c. small dice sweet onion or shallot (tightly packed)
4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 tsp. herbs de provence
1/2 lb. grass-fed beef liver, rinsed well (chicken livers work too)
1 c. combined bone marrow & tallow*
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. sea salt
Crisp the bacon in a large sauté pan. Move the bacon to the bowl of a large food processor.
Turn the heat to medium low and add the diced onions. Sauté in the bacon fat until the onion begins to caramelize, about 10 minutes. Add the chopped garlic and herbs de provence. Sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Cut the liver into manageable pieces (only necessary with beef/bison/larger animal livers) and tuck them in the pan amongst the garlic and onions. Turn the heat to low and cover with a lid. Cook for 6-8 minutes, or until the livers are completely cooked through, removing the lid once to flip them.
Turn the heat off and pour the liver mixture out into a plate or bowl to cool for 10 minutes.
Add the marrow & tallow, ghee, nutmeg, red pepper flake, sea salt, and cooled liver mixture to the food processor. Process until smooth, about 3 minutes. If you process too long, the mixture will get warm and the fats will melt, making the paté look slightly “broken.” Simply stick it into the freezer for 5-10 minutes until it hardens and briefly process again. (I did this to get the whipped texture you see pictured.)
Store the paté in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks (the fats help extend the shelf life here). Or portion out half to freeze and half to eat immediately (this is what I do).
*Roast about 3 lb. grass-fed beef femur bones at 425F for 20 minutes. Allow the bones to cool for a bit before scraping the marrow from the center. Reserve the marrow and all the rendered tallow that’s collected in the pan. Chill in the refrigerator until mixing into the paté. This can be done ahead of time. Note: if you don’t come up with one cup total, you can sub in extra butter or tallow, if you have it on hand.