Chicken Liver and Foie Gras Parfait
250g Fresh chicken livers
250g Fresh foie gras
100ml Madeira wine
½ Bunch thyme
15g Pink salt or sea salt
- Turn the oven on to 140°C/120°C fan/gas 1. Take a shallow roasting tray that is big enough to hold eight 200ml dariole moulds or ramekins, or one 1.5 litre terrine. Pour cold water into the tray until half full, then place the tray in the oven for the water to heat up. This is a foolproof way of preventing the parfait from splitting: if the water is too cold the butter will set, too hot and the eggs will cook.
- Crack the eggs into a bowl and leave on top of the stove, allowing the heat from the oven underneath to warm them. Put the chicken livers and foie gras into another bowl and place this on top of the stove as well. Dice the butter and do the same – place in a bowl and leave to get warm. The eggs, livers, foie gras and butter all need to reach around 37°C (blood heat), so be patient and wait for them to reach this temperature.
- Peel and thinly slice the shallots and put them into a small saucepan with the alcohol, thyme and salt.
- When the eggs, livers, foie gras and butter have reached 37°C, place the pan of shallots and alcohol over a high heat and boil rapidly until 90 percent of the liquid has evaporated. Now place this shallot mix in a food processor and blend until smooth.
- Add the livers and foie gras to the blended shallots and continue blending until they too are smooth. After a minute, with the machine still running, add the eggs through the hole in the lid and then pour in the butter. Blend the mix well for 3 more minutes.
- Pass the blended mix through a fine sieve, using a ladle to force it through. Pour the mix into your chosen moulds, filling them three-quarters full, then place the moulds in the tray of water in the oven. Individual moulds will take about 20 minutes to cook and a large terrine will take just under 45 minutes. The parfait should be mostly set, but wobble slightly when you shake it.
- Remove the tray from the oven and leave to stand until the water is cold. Lift out the moulds and cover each one with clingfilm, then place in the fridge overnight. Serve the parfait straight from the fridge, with croutes.
- Ideal accompaniments are ingredients with sweetness or tartness, such as capers, cornichons or other pickles, raisins or good-quality prunes, that will cut through the richness of the parfait.