Chicken and Estragon Paté

A classic french recipe found in “Alt Om Urter”
(All About Herbs) published by Ekstrabokklubben in 1985
Chicken and Estragon Paté

A pâté (from French pâté; dough or mass) is a solid paste, preferably with embedded strips or pieces of, for example ham, fish or chicken liver. Pates can be served both hot and cold, but is considered to be the most tasty after a few days of cooling.

Patés are mostly made of minced fish, shellfish, meat or poultry, especially liver and blubber. The paste of one or more types of meat, fish or shellfish are mixed in the raw state with spices and eggs or other binders. A bird which is filled with pate is called a galantine.  Fruit can also be baked into a pâté.

Paté is usually served cold, often with sweet and sour accessories such as cumberlands sauce and cucumber salad. It can form part of the first or main dishes or be used as sandwich topping.

1 1/2 kg [3,3 lb] finely ground chicken meat
500 g [1,1 lb] pork
200 g [0,45 lb] bacon, without rind
1 medium-sized onion
250 g [0,55 lb] lard
1 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons green peppercorns
1 garlic clove (optional)
3 tablespoons brandy
3 tablespoons half dry vermouth or dry white wine
3 tablespoons chopped tarragon
1 large egg


[1] Thaw the ground chicken meat. Grind the pork, bacon and the peeled onion. Cut long slices of lard and set aside. Mix meat and onions, add pepper, green peppercorns without the brine. and  crushed garlic if you choose to use that. Stir in brandy and vermouth (or white wine). Bake a small cake of the dough and check the taste. The paté should be spicy.

[2] Cover the bottom of a casserole dish with strips of of lard placed obliquely and pour in the chicken and estragon paté dough and cover with aluminum foil or a lid. Bake the paté at 140° C (285° F) for about 2 hours and 10 minutes. Take it out of the oven and leave to cool for about 1 hour. Remove the lid/aluminum foil and add a light pressure to the paté until it is completely cooled. Store in the refrigerator.

[3] Make the paté a few days before it is to be served. It keeps well for 9-10 days. It can also be made in 12 ramkins and baked for 1 1/2 hours. These can be eaten right away or be sealed with a tight lid of melted lard when they have cooled. Then they will keep for several weeks in the refrigerator.

A large pâté will serve 10-12 people. A small one 5-6.