In the Bresse region of Burgundy where some of the best chicken in France are reared, a particularly delicate mousse is prepared with the pale livers of these birds. Françoise Allirol, whose fine cooking distinguishes her Restaurant du Château in Annonay, serves her version with Ardéchois juniper berries and beurre blanc. Even made with the less subtle-tasting livers from English chicken this mousse is exceptionally pleasing.
Mince the livers finely in a processor or mincer. Mix in the crushed garlic, eggs, egg yolks and milk, and beat until incorporated. Strain through a sieve into a bowl and season lightly with the mace, and some salt and pepper.
Cook in a moderate oven (Mark 3, 160°C, 325°F) for 20–30 minutes or until set. Do not overcook or the custard will be spoiled. The gâteaux are cooked when the blade of a knife comes out clean from the centre.
To make the beurre blanc, simmer the shallots with the wine vinegar and the wine in
Remove the pan from the heat but replace it now and again to maintain the temperature. Gradually beat in the butter in small pieces never allowing the butter to melt totally. If you wish, finally beat in
Soak the juniper berries in the gin and
Turn the chicken mousses out on to small plates. Place 3 or 4 juniper berries on top of each and spoon
If you have a mousse over it is very good served lightly chilled with hot toast.
© 1987 Geraldene Holt. All rights reserved.