A terrine is a pâté that is made in a . . . wait for it: terrine, a ceramic dish that conducts heat evenly. Traditionally a pâté is baked in a dough crust. In French the word pâte means “dough,” but these days the official names have become somewhat mixed up. In France a pâté baked in a crust is now referred to as a pâté en croûte, which you could argue is in fact redundant. But because I like to do things the formal way for this occasion, I will call my pâté a “terrine.”
Although I use a terrine mold for this recipe, you could just as easily use a loaf pan or a baking dish. This recipe is freely based on a recipe given to me by my friend
Ask your butcher to debone a rabbit for you or do it yourself. In general a wild rabbit will yield
Use a pestle and mortar to pulverize the juniper berries and bay leaves.
Mince the rest of the rabbit meat, the chicken livers, and bacon in a food processor—or, if you have one, a meat grinder with the coarse die. Spoon everything into a bowl and add the reserved larger rabbit chunks, as well as the cognac, sherry, garlic, nutmeg, thyme, curing salt, kosher salt, pepper, and eggs. Make sure your hands are spotless before using them to combine everything. Give it a good kneading, until the meat mixture becomes quite sticky. At the end, mix in the pistachios.
Cover and let marinate for about 2 hours, or, better, in the fridge overnight, allowing the individual ingredients to get well acquainted.
Butter two or three ceramic terrine molds or small loaf pans (total volume about 6½ cups/1.5 liters) and line them with strips of bacon or the pork caul fat, laying them inside the molds like a hammock, with plenty of overhang.
Spoon in the rabbit mixture, carefully pressing down to make sure no air pockets are left. Fold the caul fat over the top or place a layer of bacon on top to cover the rabbit mixture. Cover with a lid or parchment paper. Wrap the entire terrine mold in aluminum foil.
Place the terrines on a rimmed baking sheet or oven tray to collect the drips of escaping fat and
Remove the lid and continue
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