Dairy-free/Casein-free Pate' Recipe!

While teaching a Liver Pate' class on Saturday, I had a student who was casein-free. So we experimented together, and stumbled upon a delicious dairy-free/casein-free chicken liver pate' recipe! I am using the "/" because one can make it either way...completely dairy-free or just casein-free (by using ghee). So here goes. The recipe is written as it was made. I have included options in parentheses for you to try on your own. Keep in mind that when you are switching out fats, the flavor of the fat will color the flavor of the pate'. Enjoy!

Dairy-free/Casein-free Chicken Liver Pate'

makes about 2 cups

3 T bacon fat (or schmaltz, tallow, lard, duck fat, coconut oil. To make casein-free, use ghee.)

1 pound chicken livers from pastured hens!

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar (or brandy, cognac or white wine. I have also used port in a pinch!)

1/2 tsp dry mustard

1/2 tsp dried rosemary (can crush if you desire in a mortar and pestle)

1 tsp green peppercorns, crushed or ground

4 cloves garlic, smashed, peeled and chopped

1/4 cup coconut cream! (or ghee, if just casein-free)

Celtic sea salt to taste

To seal:

bacon fat, melted 2-4 T (can also be schmaltz, tallow, lard, duck fat, coconut oil. To make casein-free, use ghee.)

Check chicken livers. Throw out any livers that are pale or gray. I like to rinse them under cool water. Some people like to cut them up; I like to put them in the pan just the way they are. Some people like to cut off the fat; I like to leave the fat unless it is hard or tough. You decide what you like! (It's all going to be whirred around and chopped up in the food processor anyway!)

Warm the healthy fat of your choosing in a large skillet until melted. (I like cast iron.)

Add the chicken livers and saute' until browned on the outside over medium low heat. This should take about 7-8 minutes at most. (Don't overcook livers; they will toughen and the flavor will become too strong. I like mine a bit pink inside.)

Add the seasonings and the vinegar or brandy. Cook for a minute or two, until the vinegar or brandy reduces. Add chopped garlic at this point, stir and turn off the heat.

Allow to cool.

Pour into a food processor along with celtic sea salt and coconut cream. (You may use the cream that is at the top of a can of coconut milk or make your own from "Let's Do Organic" Coconut Cream found in most natural food stores.) Process until smooth.

Taste and adjust seasonings. (You may wish to add more garlic, more rosemary or coconut cream at this point.)

Spoon into a crock, ramekin, jar, or bowl of your choice. Smooth the top and pour on melted fat to seal. Place in the refrigerator for a few hours, so the pate' will set.

Note: pate' that is sealed with a fat layer on top will last up to 3 months in the refrigerator. (I have also frozen pate' successfully.) Once you break the seal, eat within a week.