If you love pate, but have never tried making your own, you are going to LOVE this venison liver pate recipe! It’s so quick and easy. There are options included below for either a smooth or a coarse version to suit your preference.
Venison pate recipe: Coarse or smooth?
Which do you prefer? A coarse or a smooth pate?
Many years back, I ordered pate as a starter in a restaurant. I was horrified when a big slice of terrine appeared. It was filled with lumps of different coloured and textured meat. And whilst my now self would probably have loved it, my younger self was totally freaked out by the non-smooth consistency of this so called ‘pate’.
Two game pate recipes recipes for the ‘price’ of one!
The initial stages of the recipe below will provide you with a slightly coarse venison liver pate.
In case your views on pate are the same as mine were back then, I have included simple instructions in this recipe to make it the smoothest pate possible.
In fact, it’s so smooth and creamy that you’ll be hard pushed to go back to buying ready-made pate again.
Effectively then, this is a case of ‘two venison pate recipes for the price of one’. Actually, neither costs any money at all, so this surely has to be a win/win all round!
How do you make venison liver pate?
Keep reading as the full recipe is below. However, this may well be the first time you’ve ever approached a venison pate yourself, or indeed tried any game pate recipe at home, so here are some handy hints to make your first liver pate making session a positive one!
How to source venison liver
- Source your venison liver from a decent butcher. Being offal you want to know that it is super fresh. On the other hand if you shoot, you may be used to processing a large amount of venison at one time. If so, why not try this this slow cooker venison in cider, or this braised venison recipe?
What should you remove from liver to prepare it for making pate?
- I like to cut away any bit of tendon or ‘miscellaneous bits’ leaving only the liver behind. However if you’re following the instructions for a smooth pate there is no need to do this as the sieve will catch all those bits.
Using other livers to make pate
- You can swap out pretty much any animal liver for this recipe. As could likely be expected with game, venison liver has a strong flavour, whereas duck, chicken and pork liver are all very mild in comparison. I personally find that lamb liver pate sits somewhere in between and has a lovely sweetness to it.
Liver pate with brandy, port or other alcohol
- You can add a dash of alcohol to a liver pate recipe if you fancy it. Traditionally, a port or calvados would be used, but if you get into making regular batches of homemade liver pate, do shake it up a bit and try something new. Why not try a dash of brandy, whisky or rum? If you find a new favourite, please let us know in the comments below!
How do you make a smooth liver pate?
The magic key to moving from a venison liver pate that is a little coarse in texture to a smooth a creamy version is… your kitchen sieve!
Yep, simply push your pate through the sieve into a bowl. I used a soup spoon to push it through, but a ladle or silicone spatula would work just as well.
Scrape all that lovely smooth venison liver pate from the underneath of the sieve and decant into a small bowl. Cover with cling film and refrigerate until cool. Voila!
The bits that remain in the sieve can be added to any stock pot or casserole. We want to ensure that you don’t waste any of that lovely flavour!
- 1 lb venison liver
- 3 tbsp butter
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 3-4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon mixed herbs sage or thyme are perfect
- 4 tablespoons Calvados or port
- 1 tbsp fresh parsley finely chopped
Sauté the onion in a little of the butter
Add garlic and cook for a minute or so
Add the liver, bay leaves, black pepper, herbs and Calvados and cook until the meat is still a bit pink in the middle and most of them liquid has evaporated
Remove the bay leaves and blend the meat mixture in a food processor with the rest of the butter and the parsley
Taste, adding more butter if you find the taste too strong, or salt/pepper as necessary
Cover with clingfilm and chill in the fridge
The pate can be frozen really well. Just decant into ramekins (containing as much as you would eat within a day or two) cover well and freeze