Duck Liver Pâté with Fig-Raisin Compote
Serves: 8 small portions
Fig-Raisin Compote
  • 1 cup dried figs, chopped
  • ¼ cup golden raisins
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
Duck Liver Pate
  • Duck fat from 2 ducks (about 3 ounces)
  • 1 large shallot, cut into small dice
  • ½ crisp apple, peeled, cored, and cut into small dice (such as Granny Smith)
  • 2 duck livers (about 4 ounces)
  • ¼ teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Cognac or brandy
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 24¼-inch thick French bread slices
  1. For the compote: Bring figs, raisins, salt, and 1 cup water to boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and continue to simmer until reduced to jam consistency, about 10 minutes. Stir in vanilla, vinegar, and honey; cook to blend flavors, about 2 minutes longer. (Can be covered and refrigerated a month or more.)
  2. Cook duck fat in a medium skillet over medium-high heat until most of the fat has rendered and solids have browned. Reduce heat to medium, add shallots and apples; sauté until softened, a couple of minutes. Add livers, thyme and garlic; continue to cook garlic is fragrant and liver has lost its raw color, a couple of minutes longer. Season the mixture lightly with salt and pepper, and then transfer to a blender. Add Cognac; process, adding the tablespoon of cream. Continue to process, adding a little more cream if necessary to puree. Transfer mixture to a small plastic wrap-lined soufflé or custard cup. Refrigerate until ready to use (Can be covered and refrigerated up to 5 days or sealed with ½-inch duck fat and refrigerated for a couple of months)
  3. When ready to serve, adjust oven rack to middle potion and heat oven to 450 degrees. Place bread on a wire rack and place in oven. Toast until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Cut pate into wedges and serve on a small plate with a spoonful of compote and toasts
The inspiration for the Fig-Raisin Compote came from Savory and Sweet and although I added a little apple and cream to pâté, the base recipe is adapted from Jacque Pepin’s Cooking with Claudine (KQED Books and Tapes 1996). Garnish with celery or parsley leaves, if you like.
Recipe by Three Many Cooks at