Traditional French Coarse Country Pâté

Traditional French Coarse Country Pâté served with toast

The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 2 hrs 15 mins
Total: 2 hrs 35 mins
Servings: 6 to 8 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
885 Calories
52g Fat
45g Carbs
55g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 to 8
Amount per serving
Calories 885
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 52g 66%
Saturated Fat 21g 105%
Cholesterol 227mg 76%
Sodium 1559mg 68%
Total Carbohydrate 45g 16%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 55g
Vitamin C 3mg 16%
Calcium 94mg 7%
Iron 6mg 31%
Potassium 786mg 17%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Coarse country pâté is one of those things which works its magic in the kitchen. It is so perfect for filling in gaps when a full meal is not required; the food needs to be somewhere other than the dining room table (perhaps a lunch box or picnic basket) or when the "what can I make as a starter" question haunts you. 

This simple yet delicious traditional French pâté is one such beast, and yet it is so easy to make; every time you take it from the fridge, you will be so glad you made it. All it needs alongside it is some crusty bread and maybe a few pickled onions or a little piccalilli. 

This recipe comes from Chef Lionel Strub, the Chef Patron of The Clarendon at Hebden in the Yorkshire Dales. Though Lionel hails originally from Alsace in France, he has lived in Yorkshire for over 25 years. Lionel is also Chef Tutor at Cooks the Carlton School of Food.

Ingredients

  • 100 grams (7 tablespoons) unsalted butter

  • 100 grams (1 cup) minced onion

  • 1 kilogram (2 pounds) ground pork

  • 20 to 24 slices streaky bacon, 10 slices finely chopped

  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice

  • 3 tablespoons cognac

  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten

  • 1 medium gammon steak

  • Flaky sea salt, for serving

  • Cornichons, for serving

  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, for serving

  • 1 crusty baguette, for serving

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Traditional French Coarse Country Pâté ingredients in bowls

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  2. Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 350 F. Melt the butter in a heavy medium pan on a medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until soft and translucent but not brown, about 8 minutes, watch carefully to make sure this does not burn. 

    Onions and butter in a pan on a burner, with a wooden spoon

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  3. Combine ground pork and chopped bacon in large bowl. Using fork or fingertips, mix until well blended.

    Ground pork and chopped bacon in large glass bowl with a fork

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  4. Add sautéed onion, garlic, salt, thyme, allspice, cognac, and pepper to bowl with pork mixture and stir until incorporated. Add eggs. Stir until well blended.

    Sautéed onion, garlic, salt, thyme, allspice, cognac, eggs, and pepper combined with the pork mixture in the glass bowl, with a wooden spoon

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  5. Line a 9 x 5 x 3-inch metal loaf pan with the remaining whole bacon slices, arranging them side-by-side in a single layer across the width of the pan, covering the sides and the bottom of the pan, allowing the ends to drape over the sides. Arrange more slices on each short side of the pan so that all sides and the bottom of the pan are completely covered.

    Bacon lining a metal loaf pan

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  6. Using hands, lightly and evenly press half of the meat mixture (about 3 1/4 cups) onto the bottom of pan.

    Pork mixture in a loaf pan lined with bacon

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  7. Cut the gammon ham into strips and arrange in a single layer over the meat mixture.

    Gammon ham strips added to a loaf pan with the pork mixture and bacon

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  8. Top with remaining meat mixture.

    Meat mixture in a loaf pan lined with bacon

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  9. Fold bacon slices over, covering pâté.

    Bacon wrapped around the meat mixture in the loaf pan

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  10. Cover pan tightly with foil. Place the loaf pan into a large baking pan. Pour boiling water into baking pan to come halfway up sides of the loaf pan.

    Aluminum foil covered loaf pan in a baking dish with water

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  11. Bake the pâté until a thermometer inserted through foil into the center registers 155 F, about 2 hours 15 minutes.

    Traditional French Coarse Country Pâté in a loaf pan in a baking dish, with a thermometer

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  12. Remove loaf pan from baking pan and transfer to a rimmed baking sheet. Place heavy skillet or 2 to 3 heavy cans atop pâté to weigh down. Chill overnight.

    Traditional French Coarse Country Pâté under a cast iron skillet on a baking sheet

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

  13. Turn the pan over to release the pâté. Slice thinly and serve with flaky sea salt, cornichons, and mustard, and a crusty baguette. Enjoy.

    Traditional French Coarse Country Pâté on a plate, served with toast, mustard, salt and pickles

    The Spruce Eats / Julia Hartbeck

Tip

  • This dish can be made four days ahead.

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