At the end of February, I got together with friends to explore the making of terrines and pates. Some were to be for the store cupboard and others were to be eaten right away.
A recipe for rabbit terrine came from Simon Hopkinson’s book Roast Chicken and Other Stories; the recipe for perfect smoked mackerel pate came from Felicity Cloake; and from Jamie Oliver’s website came a recipe for pork rillons.
We started our cooking session with the rillons, which we had planned to eat for our lunch. The pork belly had been cut up and salted the night before. After being rinsed and dried, the pieces went into a frying pan with a little lard, to be browned all over.
The smell of the sizzling pork was wonderful!!
The remaining ingredients for this dish had already been prepared.
With the rillons out of the way, we started on the rabbit terrine. The recipe called for a small rabbit, pork back fat, skinless belly pork, pork fillet, bacon rashers, onion, garlic, butter, egg, herbs, breadcrumbs, cognac, salt and pepper – quite a list!!
The butcher had already boned the rabbit, which was incredibly helpful! In his introduction to the recipe, Simon Hopkinson calls for all ingredients to be chopped by hand, as the resultingtexture is nicer. We chopped everything into small pieces, but the results were still a little too coarse for our liking.
… and then we packed the mixture into terrine jars – the kind that seal with a clip and a rubber band.
At that point, we were ready for a little aperitif!!
After a few sips of vin d’orange, we made the perfect smoked mackerel pate. The recipe was very simple. Smoked mackerel fillets were skinned (and any remaining bones removed), then pureed in a food processor with cream cheese, creme fraiche, and horseradish. A few grinds of black pepper, some lemon juice and some chopped dill were folded in, and that was it!
We ate the smoked mackerel pate with some toast – it was absolutely delicious and a perfect start to our meal!!
At the end of that delicious meal, our terrines were ready to come out of the oven:
They were looking very good! Of course the jars would have to cool completely before the clips could be taken off, and then they would have to stand for a week or two for the flavour to develop fully.
Prior to writing this, I opened a jar to taste it. The pate is absolutely delicious – well worth the effort, and definitely one to make again!