Duck Liver Pâté

For a make-ahead starter try James Martin's pâté, subtly flavoured with brandy and fresh basil
By James Martin
Duck Liver Pâté
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 10
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes plus 30 mins cooling time
  • Effort: medium


  • 1 kg duck livers, left whole, all sinewy bits removed
  • 6 tbsp brandy
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 handfuls basil
  • 250 g unsalted butter

To serve

  • orange segments, charred with a blow torch or under the grill
  • melba toast


1. Preheat the oven to 160C/gas 3.

2. Arrange the livers in a single layer in an ovenproof dish, then add the garlic, basil leaves, brandy and seasoning.

3. Put the livers to the preheated oven and poach for about 30 minutes, turning once. The livers are ready when they are brown on the outside but still pink in the middle.

4. Transfer the livers and cooking liquor to a blender with 250g of the butter, and combine until smooth. Check the seasoning, then scrape into small pots and leave to cool.

5. When cool, clarify the remaining butter by melting it in a pan and removing all the curd-like sediment. Spoon the clear liquid over the surface of the pots and arrange a couple of fresh basil leaves on top. Chill in the fridge until set.

6. Serve the pâté with charred orange segments and melba toast.

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