What’s chef’s favourite pate, how would he make it and what would he serve it with?

Loretta Slater, Lancaster

FOR me the finest pate you can make is a chicken liver parfait. Very light in texture, but very rich and beautiful spread on toast. It is a little difficult to make and to set right but well worth the effort. In a small saucepan reduce 150ml red wine, 75ml port, 2 finely chopped shallots, 2 nice sprigs of thyme and 2 bay leaves by three quarters.

Strain and reserve the wine. You will need 325g clean chicken livers, leave them at room temperature when you are ready to make your parfait and 1 whole egg and 2 egg yolks. Season the livers with salt and cracked black pepper. Melt 325g unsalted butter. In a good quality blender, blend together the room temperature livers and eggs with the strained red wine and then slowly add the warm, melted butter. When the livers are well blended, pass through a strainer again. Then pour into china ramekins or similar moulds. Place the ramekins in a roasting tray, add hot water to half way up the sides of the ramekin, then bake at 110C for approximately 45 minutes. They should feel firm to touch. Allow to cool. Because the parfait is rich, it’s good to serve with something pickled, so maybe find some good quality pickled onions or a nice, sharp chutney. Serve with some thin toast.