Hare Pâté

Preparation info

  • Serves

    6–8

    • Difficulty

      Complex

Appears in

The Times Calendar Cookbook

By Katie Stewart

Published 1977

  • About

Cutting the raw flesh from game for pâté mixture is a task most cooks hate. In this recipe the meat is cooked and then pounded with the flavouring ingredients. This is really a potted hare, if one were to be honest about the title, but it has the texture and flavour of a delicious pâté. Order your hare in advance so that the butcher can prepare it when he’s not busy.

Ingredients

  • 1 hare, skinned and cut in pieces
  • vinegar (see method)
  • 1 onion
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • bay leaf
  • salt and few peppercorns
  • 175 g/6 oz butter
  • grated rind of ½ lemon
  • freshly milled pepper
  • pinch ground nutmeg
  • 1–2 tablespoons dry sherry

    Method

    Wipe the pieces of hare with a damp cloth and place in a large basin. Add cold water and about 1.5 dl (¼ pint) vinegar to cover the pieces.

    Leave for several hours or overnight during which time the vinegar draws the blood and makes the hare meat less rich. Drain and pat the pieces dry.

    Place the hare pieces in a good-sized saucepan. Peel and slice the onion. Add to the pan with the scraped and sliced carrots, the peeled and cut-up clove of garlic and the bay leaf. Add cold water to cover the hare, then add a good seasoning of salt and a few peppercorns. Bring slowly to the boil, then lower the heat and allow to simmer gently for about 3½–4 hours or until the flesh is quite tender and coming away from the bones.

    Lift the hare pieces from the pan and leave until cool enough to handle. Remove the flesh from the bones and mince the hare flesh into a basin. Melt 100 g (4 oz) of the butter with the grated lemon rind over low heat. Add to the minced hare and beat well with a wooden spoon, add a few tablespoons of hare stock from the pan and beat well to get a firm well-blended mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste and a pinch of nutmeg and beat in the sherry to taste.

    Spoon the mixture into a pâté dish or white china soufflé dish and spread level. Melt the remaining butter and pour over the surface. Decorate with the bay leaf rescued from the hare stock and chill for several hours. Serve with hot toast or French bread.