Chicken Liver Parfait

This is a great dish for a starter or a main item on a cold buffet. I like to serve a slice on a plate with some good, thick toast, a few lettuce leaves and home-made Grape Chutney or Green Tomato Chutney I always cook this parfait in a loaf tin or porcelain terrine mould, but of course individual 7.5 cm (3 in) moulds can be used.


For the Parfait

  • 750 g ( lb) chicken livers, soaked for at least 24 hours in cold milk
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • Salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • 3 eggs
  • 900 ml ( pints) double cream
  • 3 tablespoons brandy
  • About 3 tablespoons Veal jus or bought alternative (optional)


Pre-heat the oven to 160°C/325°F/gas 3. Butter a 30 × 8 × 8 cm (12 × 3 × 3 in) terrine dish with a lid, a 900 g (2 lb) loaf tin, or eight to ten 7.5 cm (3 in) ramekin dishes and line them all with greaseproof paper.

Soaking the livers in milk removes any bitter taste. Drain the milk from the livers and discard the milk. For the best results with this recipe you will need a food processor or liquidizer. Blitz the livers in the processor with the garlic, nutmeg, salt and pepper until smooth. Add the eggs and blitz for a further 1 minute. Add the cream, brandy and jus, if using. (The jus is optional for this recipe, but I find it gives a little depth and flavour to the parfait.) Continue to blitz for a few seconds and then check for seasoning. The parfait should now be pushed through a fine sieve to give a smoother consistency. You will now find the mix to be quite liquid.

Pour the mix into the prepared terrine or moulds and cover with a lid. Stand in a tray filled with warm water to come half-way up the sides of the terrine to ensure a slow, steady cooking, and cook in the pre-heated oven for about 1½ hours. Make sure the parfait is checked after 30 minutes and 1 hour. After 1 hour, check every 10 minutes until the parfait is just firming to the touch. It will, of course, continue to cook once removed from the oven until it has completely cooled. Remove from the water bath and leave to cool then chill for 2–3 hours.

To serve the parfait, dip the mould into hot water and turn it over on to a chopping board. Remove the greaseproof paper and slice as needed. The parfait can be wrapped in cling film and kept in the fridge for 2–3 days.