Pâté in a Pastry Crust

  • Serves

    serves 6-8


(Pate en Croute)
Hard-cooked eggs dress up this version of the classic French pate in a pastry crust, a specialty of the region of Berry in central France. Serve the pate warm or cold, accompanied by a green salad.

What You Will Need


  • 8 oz. smoked bacon
  • 1 (12-oz.) duck breast, fat removed
  • 2 (6-oz.) chicken breasts
  • 3 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup Sancerre or other dry, acidic white wine
  • 1 tsp. crushed coriander seeds
  • 12 tsp. nutmeg
  • 2 tsp. thyme leaves
  • 14 cup chopped chervil
  • 14 cup chopped chives
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tbsp. crème fraîche
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 cup flour
  • 1 lb. frozen puff pastry, defrosted but cold
  • 3 hard-cooked eggs, peeled


Step 1

Cut bacon, duck breast, and chicken into medium pieces. Dress with oil and wine, coating pieces well. Marinate 1 hour in a bowl in the refrigerator.

Step 2

Preheat oven to 400°. Drain meat, discarding marinade. Put meat, coriander, nutmeg, thyme, chervil, chives, 2 of the eggs, crème fraîche, and salt and pepper in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Pulse until finely chopped.

Step 3

On a floured work surface, unfold cold puff pastry and cut into two rectangles. Roll both sheets of pastry into 8" × 11" shapes. Place one pastry rectangle on a nonstick baking sheet. Divide meat mixture in half and spread half on pastry. Put hard-cooked eggs in a line down middle of meat. Pat remaining meat over eggs. Pull up pastry on the sides, then completely cover with a second rectangle of pastry. Cut off excess pastry, wet edges with water, and press together. Cut a small hole in center of pâté and place a small piece of rolled parchment in it to allow steam to escape during baking. Beat remaining egg with a little water and brush wash over pâté. Cut decorative shapes out of excess pastry and press onto pâté.

Step 4

Place in the oven for 20 minutes, then lower heat to 350° and cook for another 20 minutes. The pâté should rest for 30 minutes before serving, so that it is firm enough to slice.
Pate in a Pastry Crust

A well-made Pate in pastry crust is one of the glories of traditional French cooking. See the recipe for Pate in a Pastry Crust»

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