ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Cooking Discussions › Food & Cooking › Split liver parfait HELP!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Split liver parfait HELP!

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hello! it seems silly, but I have had lots of problems with liver parfaits lately (I am a garde manger chef in a small restaurant in the UK). I seal and flambee my livers (chicken and calf, generally), process them with the same wight of butter and 3 eggs to each 250g of butter (I think that's 2 sticks in American terms), pass, then put them in a cold bain-marie covered in foil at 160 C (sorry, can't work in F). Sometimes this works, but sometimes the butter splits and rises to the top, or when I chill the parfait it becomes granular, with bits of congealed butter scattered throughout.

I think it has something to do with the height of the water in the bain-marie - or perhaps the way I cover it? Or is it gremlins??? Help please!

Thanks E
post #2 of 8
Parfait?
Pate?

Is your butter and liver the same temp when you begin?
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
Reply
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
Reply
post #3 of 8
Never heard of a liver parfait????????:crazy:
CHEFED
Reply
CHEFED
Reply
post #4 of 8
>>I am a garde manger chef in a small restaurant in the UK

see: BBC - Food - Get cooking - Chicken liver parfait with brandy
post #5 of 8
Actually I have seen a liver parfait, but it was nothing like this -- a truly weird creation with layers of liver and herbs and creams and so on in a tall glass. I'd have thought this thing you're making was a mousse. Well, no matter. On to the actual question:

1. Why are you re-cooking the whole thing in a bain-marie? I mean, why not just cook the liver a hair more, until barely done, process with butter (and maybe cream -- see below), pack and chill. Whatever is going wrong is clearly happening at the final cooking stage, so why not eliminate it?

2. If you're re-cooking, it seems to me there will always be a danger of the butter breaking. If you must do this, I'd think adding heavy (double) cream would help stabilize the mixture.

3. I don't understand the need for the egg binder.

Myself, I would keep it very, very simple. Sear, flame, and just barely finish cooking the livers in a pan. (I might saute just a little bit of minced shallot along with the liver, just to add that complex sweetness.) Process with an equal weight of butter and perhaps a little double cream. Pass, then pack into a crock, cover tightly, and chill. Serve.

Incidentally, if you want to be really cheap, the weight of those excess fat pads at the opening of a chicken is generally about the same as that of the liver, at least if the chicken is reasonably decently treated in life. So if you mince that fat fine and cook the liver in it, you can skip all or the vast majority of the butter. And since you were probably throwing that fat out -- who cooks in schmaltz any more? -- you've just saved yourself a large proportion of the food cost, and yet the result will be equally good, in some respects actually better because the chicken fat has an inimitable depth of flavor.
post #6 of 8
Looked at this link and this is as much a parfait as we know a parfait in this country to be as water is sand.. To me this is a mousse. Maybe in The UK it is called a parfait to me its spooned out Mousse or Pate':D
CHEFED
Reply
CHEFED
Reply
post #7 of 8
Well, the traditioal Euro/French parfait is a frozen mousse dessert, while the American interpretation is more of a layered cream/fruit concoction. However, back to the question at hand... it seems that your second cooking process is absolutely unnecessary if you've already cooked the livers the first itme around (although you did add the eggs). How do you cover your parfaits when you bake them? Remember that the effect of a bain marie is negated when you tightly cover your steaming vessel, so loosely cover your bain marie and poke a few holes into it. Also, you only really need to add enough water to reach about halfway up the ramekins (even a third up is more than enough) for it do work effectively.
"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
Reply
"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
Reply
post #8 of 8
>>Maybe in The UK

Ed, perhaps you've heard the saying: US and UK, two countries separated by a common language.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Food & Cooking
ChefTalk.com › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Cooking Discussions › Food & Cooking › Split liver parfait HELP!