2011, Recipes 116-118: Roast Chicken, Mushroom Soup and Chicken Liver Paté

 Roast Chicken
Recipe courtesy of Anthony Bourdain
  • 1 whole chicken, about 4 lbs (1.8 kg), giblets reserved
  • Salt (preferably sea salt) and freshly crushed black pepper
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 onion, peeled and cut in half
  • 1 sprig of fresh rosemary (do not get that dried trash anywhere near my bird!)
  • 1 sprig of fresh thyme (What did I just say?)
  • 2 tbsp (28 g) herb butter (see recipe at bottom of post)
  • 3 tbsp (42 g) butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cup (340 ml) white wine
  • A little chopped flat parsley
The recipe is incredibly long thought not terribly complicated so just use the link shown above if you want to make this.

Results: Yummy! But a pretty basic herb-roasted chicken.

 Mushroom Soup
Recipe courtesy of Anthony Bourdain
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 12 ounces button mushrooms, halved
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 sprig parsley
  • 2 ounces sherry
  • salt and pepper 

In a medium saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons/28g of the butter over medium heat and add the onion.  
Cook until the onion is soft and translucent, then add the mushrooms and the remaining butter.  
Let the mixture sweat for about 8 minutes, taking care that the onion doesn't take on any brown color. 
Stir in the chicken stock and the parsley and bring to a boil.  Immediately reduce the heat and simmer 
for about an hour.

After an hour, remove the parsley and discard.  Let the soup cool for a few minutes, then 

transfer to the blender and carefully blend at hight speed until smooth.  (Do this in batches).  When blended, return the mix to the pot, season with salt and pepper, and bring up to a simmer again.  
Add the sherry, mix well, and serve immediately, garnished with chives, if desired.
Result: Delicious! I think next time I'll leave some of the soup unpureed to get the chunkiness of the mushrooms. But it was a wonderful soup.

Chicken Liver Paté
Recipe courtesy of Tyler Florence
  • 1 pound chicken livers, trimmed of any membranes or fat
  • 6 tablespoons Port wine
  • 14 tablespoons (1 3/4 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves, plus 1 nice-looking sprig for garnish
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • baguette slices, toasted
  • red grapes (optional)
  1. Rinse the livers and pat them dry. Put them in a small bowl, pour the Port wine over them, cover & refridgerate for 2 hours.
  2. Melt 3 tablespoons of the butter in a medium skillet. Add the shallots, garlic, & chopped thyme and cook over medium-low heat, stirring often, until softened but not brown (3-4 minutes).
  3. Add the livers, reserving the Port, and cook without browning until the livers just change color (3-4 minutes). (Browning would toughen the exterior of the livers & the pate would not be smooth.)
  4. Add the reserved Port to the pan and simmer for 2 minutes.
  5. Put all of that in a blender and puree until smooth. Add 3 more tablespoons of butter and process again until smooth. Now pour in the cream and pulse just until incorporated. Season with salt & pepper. (Note: It looks & smells horrid, but don't be alarmed! It's much better once it's cooled!)
  6. Spoon the mixture into a 3-cup terrine or dish and smooth the surface. Refridgerate for 1 hour, or until the pate just firms up.
  7. Then, melt the remaining 8 tablespoons of butter (1 stick) and pour it over the top of the pate to cover completely (this will seal the top & keep from discoloring). Press the thyme sprig into the butter and chill overnight (or up to a week).
  8. Serve with toasted baguette slices & red grapes.
Result: Surprisingly sweet. I'm quite sure it was the the port I used. It wasn't sticky sweet but it was sweet. You don't have to eat the butter on top if you don't want to. My family thought it looked gross. Just scrape it off. I really liked this recipe! It made me feel quite fancy!

Now on day two, I put paté on toasted baguette with Dijon mustard and an egg over medium. It was AMAZING!! I could also see eating this the same way with a little frisée lettuce or arugula like some recipes say. I want this for breakfast regularly now!!