Canned Foie Gras Recipe


Aug 21st, 2006, 10:42 PM
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Canned Foie Gras Recipe

I bought some canned foie gras in Paris in January and I still have a couple cans left. I need help/suggestions on how to serve it.

The last two times I served it at a dinner party (opened the can and plopped it on a saucer), hardly anyone touched it because it looked like cat food.

At restaurants, I especially enjoy the pate de foie gras that is served in a ramekin accompanied by some dark bread/toasts.

Does anyone know how to convert the canned foie gras into the delicious pate in a ramekin?

P/S> Is there an expiration date for canned foie gras?
mingtsainy is offline  
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Aug 21st, 2006, 11:56 PM
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ooh! Me, me!! you are speaking to me!!!

I used my canned foie gras at a casual dinner party recently with rave results. This is from "Cooking for Mr. Latte" by Amanda Hesser. These are called "Adult PBJs."

8 slices white sandwich bread (soft and buttery, not dry)
8 tablespoons foie gras mousse, room temperature
Coarse sea salt
4 tablespoons berry jam (prferably tart berries, like cranberries, blackberries, and currants)

1. Lay the slices of bread on a breadboard. Spread the foie gras mousse on four of the slices. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt. Spread the jam on the other 4 slices of bread. Join the jam slices with the foie gras slices to make 4 sandwiches.

2. Using a bread knife, cut off the crusts with gentle sawing motions, then cut the sandwiches into quarters, so you end up with triangles. Stack on a serving platter and march them out to the party.
MelissaHI is offline  
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 12:18 AM
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The expiration date will be either on the lid or the bottom of the can (all edible products sold in France have an expiration date specified)

And thaks MellissaH ! Now i have an american recipe for foie gras (here the canned one is generally used as a filling)
norween is offline  
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 12:56 AM
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Some advice from the Perigord (Dordogne) where we make and eat a lot of foie gras.

Before you start your recipe, you should check what kind of 'canned foie gras' you have. Foie gras comes in varying levels and prices.

Entier is a whole piece, and is usually in a glass jar, often with a fair amount of goose/duck fat.

Bloc is still all foie gras but chopped/emulsified so that it looks more appealing to those who dont like the idea of the fat. Still tastes good.

Pate de foie gras actually has pork in it. Although many English speakers call all foie gras 'pate' a French person would not.

Finally, if you do have something called Mousse, it has a small proportion of foie gras and a lot of filler.I would not consider mousse as foie gras, and it shouldn't be served the same way.

If you do have the Entier, or even Bloc, it is great just sliced on a plate with very lightly toasted white bread - dark often has too strong a taste. Perhaps with a bit of onion confit or a fruit confit jam on the side.

If your foie gras looks like cat food, perhaps you haven't served it at the right temperature. It should be cool, though not so cold that you can't taste it. Usually an hour or so in the fridge before you serve it will get it cool enough. You want to be able to slice it nicely (dip your knife in hot water to help with this.)

Finally, although many North Americans aren't fond of sweet wine, foie gras really is good with a glass of Monbazillac, a sweet wine from near Bergerac.

If you want an English language cookbook with foie gras and other regional southwest France cookbooks, two great ones are Paula Wolfert's The Cooking of SOuthwest France, and Jeanne Strang, Goose Fat and Garlic.

Bon apetit!
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 01:02 AM
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I once had this starter made with chicken liver pate but foie gras would be even better.

Moistened the foi gras with a teaspoon or two of cognac (flame it first for a few seconds to burn off the excess alcohol & cool - (we're looking for flavour here) add a titch of cream but don't make the mixture sloppy!.

Combine well and put into a piping bag with an attractive nozzle.
Cool in fridge until ready to serve.
Prepare a basket of melba toast.
Open a jar of preserved green figs in syrup and drain them (reserving some of the syrup).
With a sharp paring knife hold the figs at the stalk end and carefully create four or so slices ending just before the stalk.

To Serve:
Place one or two figs on the plate and push gently to spread fan-like. drop some syrup onto them.
Pipe the foie gras in three little rosettes onto the plate and decorate with any smallish flower from the garden or just an attractive leaf.

The combination of fig and pate is wonderful with either crusty bread or melba toast.
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 01:24 AM
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This recipe is a favorite of mine and works great as an appetizer.

Extract foie gras from the can with a melon baller and place each ball onto a large plate making sure that none touches its neighbor.

Place large plate into freezer and spend the next 45 minutes making sauces. I like a creamy cheese sauce, a dark turkey and rasberry gravy, or spiced strawberry jam. . . it depends on what you know how to make and what flavors you are going for.

Now, you must work quickly. Using little rounds of millefeuille dough, place the balls in the middle, fold them over and make half moon raviolis.

Deep fry them (I like olive oil, but I am pretty sure my mother used sunflower once and they were good) quickly and then serve them crispy and hot with the sauces you made.

Man, these come out great!
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 11:00 AM
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PalQ, sometimes it's hard to say something delicately isn't it? I suggest you throw the cans away, make a donation to the Humane Society, and try this delicious pate at your next party.
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 11:05 AM
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Thanks LLindaC! Think of how much more delicious it will be knowing nothing suffered or died to nourish you. Think of how much healthier the veggie version is as well...
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 11:10 AM
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Thanks, everyone, for the comments and recipes.

Norween, I looked closely at the can and there is indeed an expiration date on it -- 30.05.06. I guess I will have to toss it out since it's been sitting in the pantry since January.

Anti-foie gras people, I respect your feelings but you need to respect ours too. Otherwise, you're just another GWB.

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Aug 22nd, 2006, 11:35 AM
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OK I respect your feeling that it's OK to make animals suffer horribly just to produce some delicacy only rich folks can eat. And it's nice that you respect my feelings about not putting animals to undue torture for some delicacy, --i know all animal killing is torture - well i'd be against that too.
Sincerely i do respect your morals on this point but hope to convince you to review your feelings on this. Some day as people evolve more on a consciene point of view such barbarity will be illegal in a civilized society where animals have feelings and rights too.
I do eat a little meat from time to time and always castigate myself for doing it - so i too am seeking to improve on this point.
And at this point i'd eat that can, or i mean its contents, because these dates are conservative and no doubt it's good - cook well. At this point the torture the fowl went thru to produce it would be totally wasted if you threw it away.
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 12:44 PM
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I prefer it plopped on a plate and served with toast points. Cat food indeed.
You can make "French kisses" ==stuff dried figs with foie gras.
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 02:08 PM
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Several years ago I remember reading about a small songbird being eaten as a special delicacy in France. It seemed to be a seasonal indulgence and the diners wore dinner napkins on their heads while feasting on the tiny birds. Does anyone remember?
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 02:25 PM
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nini, the bird was probably ortolan (if I spelled it right), which is an endangered species. Eating them is pretty much an open secret in France.

That REALLY ought to set off PalQ.
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 02:33 PM
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oh goodness! read on: (I'm going to grill some tofu)
"If guilt is a flavour, and it definitely is, then l'ortolan is one of
the world's greatest dishes. Ö.
The birds must be taken alive; once captured they are either blinded
or kept in a lightless box for a month to gorge on millet, grapes, and
figs, a technique apparently taken from the decadent cooks of Imperial
Rome who called the birds beccafico, or 'fig-pecker'. When they've
reached four times their normal size, they're drowned in a snifter of

This sadistic mise en scene has transformed the bird from a symbol of
innocence to an act of gluttony symbolic of the fall from grace. In
Collette's novel Gigi, for instance, the tomboyish main character
prepares for her entry into polite society with lessons in the correct
way to eat lobsters and boiled eggs. When she begins training to be a
courtesan, however, she is said to be 'learning how to eat the
ortolan'. Not that it was only courtesans who indulged. The tradition
of covering one's head while eating the bird was supposedly started by
a soft-bellied priest trying to hide his sadistic gluttony from God.

Cooking l'ortolan is simplicity itself. Simply pop them in a high oven
for six to eight minutes and serve. The secret is entirely in the
eating. First you cover your head with a traditional embroidered
cloth. Then place the entire four-ounce bird into your mouth. Only its
head should dangle out from between your lips. Bite off the head and
discard. L'ortolan should be served immediately; it is meant to be so
hot that you must rest it on your tongue while inhaling rapidly
through your mouth. This cools the bird, but its real purpose is to
force you to allow its ambrosial fat to cascade freely down your

When cool, begin to chew. It should take about 15 minutes to work your
way through the breast and wings, the delicately crackling bones, and
on to the inner organs. Devotees claim they can taste the bird's
entire life as they chew in the darkness: the wheat of Morocco, the
salt air of the Mediterranean, the lavender of Provence. The pea-sized
lungs and heart, saturated with Armagnac from its drowning, are said
to burst in a liqueur-scented flower on the diner's tongue. Enjoy with
a good Bordeaux.

What could be more delicious? Nothing, according to initiates, who
compare the banning of the ortolan to the death of French culture and
continue to eat them at the risk of being fined thousands of pounds.

LLindaC is offline  
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 02:36 PM
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ya know, I cut and pasted that from a cooking site, but I swear one of my cats wrote it. ;-)
LLindaC is offline  
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 02:38 PM
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I heard somewhere that the expiration date is only a suggestion like in "better be used by" date in US. Is it the same in Western European countries?

In my recipe, the main step would be: after opening the can, watch it!! just look away, and somebody will take a scoop out!!

I don't eat foie gras, but make my own liver pate. Anybody has good recipes for that?

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Aug 22nd, 2006, 02:41 PM
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"they're drowned in a snifter of
Armagnac" - wow, must be a real cognac hater! why would somebody spoil cognac this way? eeewwwwwww...
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 02:42 PM
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About 10 years ago, the hottest trend in Hong Kong cuisine was "barely alive" seafood. Top restaurants in the city were serving drunken shrimp and flash-fried fish (as in really really quick frying while the fish is still alive) to some of the wealthest people in the world. Basically, the drunken shrimp starts out with a bowl of live shrimps/prawns taken out of a display fish tank, doused with a generous amount of cognac and then flamed at the diners' table. And they are eaten immediately. The flash-fried fish involves having the fish (still alive) coated with flour and deep fried neck-up and served while the fish is still gasping for air. That's a little extreme cuisine for you.

In response to anti-foie gras people, I have another story, which I would like you to think about. When I was in graduate school during the time of the Seoul Olympics, there was a petition going around campus organized by student groups voicing their opposition to doggie cuisine in South Koreans.

[N.B.: I don't know the veracity of dog eating in S. Korea so please don't flame me on it.]

One of the students asked everyone in class to sign the petition and our philosophy professor decided to use this as an example for class discussion. Basically, he asked the class what we would do if every student in India signed a petition to urge the US to ban the consumption of beef? Cows are sacred in India and there are over 1 billion Indians in the world?

Anyway, I learned more about life in that course than I ever did in all my other classes.
mingtsainy is offline  
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 02:44 PM
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it's actually older than cognac!
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Aug 22nd, 2006, 02:46 PM
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Very wise professor.
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