Human memory of tastes and smells never ceases to amaze me. I am constantly in awe of tastes that I can conjure up from my childhood. These must be primeval senses deeply linked to our survival, but no matter what the reason, it is nothing short of astounding.
This all came into play while I was planning the dishes I would make for our Christmas feast. In a quiet moment, a beautiful appetizer I had made a decade or more ago, came bounding into my brain. I wracked my memory for where I might find this recipe, and remembered the binders, where I store old recipes torn from magazines. One quick search, and I had the recipe in my hand. I was ecstatic!
Now here comes a true mystery! My husband and I were on our way out, so I left the recipe in its page protector, on the kitchen countertop… and never saw it again. I came home and did some cooking and then thought that I should consult the recipe in order to purchase the ingredients. I couldn’t find it. It was gone… I mean gone. I searched high and low, inside cookbooks where I may have tucked it; under magazines and furniture; in drawers; in cupboards. The recipe that I had protected for years inside a binder was gone! I was so upset – it had been safe for years, and I had pulled it out of the binder for 1 day, and it had disappeared! I knew more or less, what was in the recipe, but the details eluded me. Enter the internet! A few clicks, and I had my old recipe, details and all. (I found it here at Better Homes and Gardens) And so, I can share it here with you today, and let you know that this is one of those recipes that is the epitome of entertaining. The cranberries and pistachios speak of Christmas, but you could bring this out any time, and your guests will be transfixed, and fighting for the plate. I hope you enjoy this as much as we did! And maybe we don’t need those heavy recipe binders anymore; maybe we can just rely on the internet to archive them all for us.
It is early in the week, but I will share my post with my friends at Fiesta Friday. Thanks so much to our wonderful hosts, Jhuls @ The Not So Creative Cook, and Ginger @ Ginger and Bread. And because good party food is meant to be shared, I am also posting this on Throwback Thursday, Our Growing Edge, and Saucy Saturdays.
¾ cup dried cranberries
½ cup finely chopped shallots or white onion
½ cup chopped, shelled pistachio nuts
1/3 cup port wine or cranberry juice
¼ cup half and half or light cream
¼ cup fine dry bread crumbs
2 teaspoons dry sage leaves, crushed or ½ teaspoon ground sage (fresh thyme is also nice)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (more, if you like your pâté more peppery)
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 pound lean ground pork
1 pound lean ground beef
Stone ground mustard
Baguette slices or crackers
Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly spray a 9x5x3-inch loaf pan (or 3-5 1/2 x 3 inch mini loaf pans) with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
Beat egg in a large mixing bowl. Add cranberries, onion, pistachio nuts, port wine, cream, bread crumbs, sage, salt, pepper, and garlic. Mix well. Add the ground beef and pork and mix well. Press into prepared pan. Cover tightly with foil and bake for 1½ hours.
Remove pan from the oven. Cool slightly. Uncover and carefully pour off the drippings, leaving the pâté in the pan. Cover the pâté loosely with foil. Place several heavy cans of food in another loaf pan to serve as weights. Place on top of the covered pan. Chill overnight.
Remove the weighted pan and foil. Loosen sides if necessary. Invert onto a serving platter or wrap in plastic wrap and chill for up to 2 days. Cut pâté into thin slices. Serve with bread or crackers, and stone ground mustard.
This is also super delicious with my Rosemary Nut Crackers. Check them out!
Merry Christmas everyone! I hope you all shared a wonderful day with your loved ones.