Making Danish Liver Pate probably got me more excited than any other recipe I have had the pleasure to blog about. You absolutely must experience a warm, home-made Liver Pate. Fresh out of the oven, served with fried mushrooms and bacon or topped with some wonderful pickled beets. This is actually the first time I have made it myself. I have been wanting to make it for the past 25 years but somehow the thought of making it by myself was always overwhelming. And now that I have finally made my first-ever home-made Liver Pate, I can’t quite figure out what the fuzz was all about.
Liver Pate is everywhere in Denmark. It can be found, dare I say, in all self-respecting grocery stores. It is a way of life, as natural as the air we breath. The store-bought Liver Pate is very good but there is something to be said about a home-made Liver Pate and I think it is definitely worth the effort! The Pate can be served cold or warm on an open-faced sandwich often topped with either pickled beets, crispy fried onions, mushrooms, cucumbers or Danish Sky which is basically a beef jello. It can be made plainly with just one topping or it can be quite an elaborate Smørrebrød creation.
Liver Pate is not the most pleasant food to prepare, truth be told, it’s really kinda gross. BUT, the end result is making me feel like I’m in heaven. Let me just say that there are hundreds of different ways you can make Liver Pate. I’ve heard of adding potatoes, apples, anchovies, Bechamel sauce – or not, a lot of spices – or not, high-fat – low-fat, animal fat (called Spæk in Danish) vs just margarine, so there are many, many variations out there. This recipe is the one my Mother and Father uses and I think it’s simply just wonderful. Thanks Mom and Dad for helping me make my first ever Liver Pate! :)
Please note that when you go to look for the fat (spæk) used in this recipe, it’s not something you’ll typically find sitting in the freezer section at your grocery store. Simply just ask the butcher in the meat department if they can give you a couple of chunks of fat. Often times, they wont even charge you for it :)
For the Bechamel Sauce:
1 deciliter milk (3.4 oz)
4 deciliter water (13.5 oz)
1 extra-large vegetable bouillon cube (10 grams, 3/8 oz)
50 grams margarine (1 3/4 oz)
4-5 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/4 teaspoon pepper, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
For the Liver mixture:
500 grams Liver ( 1 lb)
80 grams fat (2 7/8 oz)
65 grams smoked bacon (2 1/2 oz)
50 grams onion (2 oz)
3 whole large eggs
To make Bechamel sauce: In a saucepan add water and milk. Break-up vegetable bouillon cube into liquid and bring up to warm temperature, turn heat off. In a pan, melt margarine. Add flour and whisk until smooth, continue to cook for 2-3 minutes. Add warm milk/water in 1 cup increments while whisking. Mixture should be like a thick gravy. Add salt, pepper, allspice and nutmeg to taste. If you get lumps in this gravy simply just run it through a sieve. Pour gravy into a covered Tupperware container and allow to cool in refrigerator.
Cut Liver, fat, bacon and onion into 1 inch pieces. Starting with the fat, bacon and onion, either run them through a meat grinder twice or process in a food processor until you have a slightly lumpy mixture. Liver should only go through meat grinder once or add Liver to food processor and blend until pretty smooth. Mix together Liver and fat mixture. Add the 3 whole eggs and cooled Bechamel sauce, stir to combine. Pour into small aluminum forms (I got 4 small forms full) and if freezing cover top tightly with aluminum foil and store in freezer safe bags. When ready to cook Liver Pate, fill an oven-proof dish with warm water 1/2 way up the side of aluminum form. Bake uncovered in oven at 200 degree C (390 degrees F) for 1 hour 30 minutes. Enjoy!
Source: my parents Ove and Åse Frandsen