Duck Liver Pâté with Blackberry Conserva

The tartness and texture of the blackberry conserva is a nice contrast to the rich, silky pâté. Spoon leftover blackberry conserva on pancakes, waffles, or ice cream.

Duck Liver Pâté with Blackberry Conserva
Photo: William Hereford
Active Time:
1 hrs 20 mins
Total Time:
7 hrs 20 mins



  • 14 ounces duck livers (about 1 1/4 cups)

  • 1 tablespoon plus 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided

  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (5 ounces)

  • 1 medium-size yellow onion, thinly sliced

  • 10 fresh sage leaves

  • 1/3 cup Champagne or dry white wine

  • 1/3 cup duck fat, melted


  • 2 pounds fresh or frozen blackberries

  • 5 tablespoons granulated sugar

  • 2 tablespoons water

  • 4 thyme sprigs

  • 3 whole cloves

  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

  • Pinch of black pepper

  • Grilled bread slices and whole-grain mustard, for serving


Make the duck liver pâté

  1. Stir together livers and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl; set aside.

  2. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium. Add onion, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and translucent but not browned, about 10 minutes. Transfer onion mixture to bowl of a food processor. Add livers to skillet, and cook over medium until bright pink all the way through, 1 minute to 1 minute and 30 seconds per side. Add sage, and cook until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Remove skillet from heat; stir in Champagne. Let stand 5 minutes.

  3. Transfer liver mixture to food processor with onion mixture. Process until smooth and silky, about 2 minutes, stopping to scrape down sides as needed. Add remaining 1 tablespoon salt. Process until incorporated, about 10 seconds. Using a rubber spatula, press liver mixture through a fine wire-mesh strainer into a bowl; discard solids. Transfer pureed liver mixture to a large (20- to 24-ounce) terrine mold or ramekin or 2 smaller (10- to 12-ounce) ramekins. Smooth top, and tap ramekin on counter a few times to remove any air bubbles. Cover pâté with melted duck fat (about 1/4 inch thick), and chill, uncovered, until set, at least 6 hours or up to 2 days.

While pâté chills, make the blackberry conserva

  1. Combine blackberries, sugar, and 2 tablespoons water in a large saucepan. Wrap thyme and cloves in cheese-cloth, and tie ends to make a sachet. Add sachet to blackberry mixture. Bring to a boil over medium-high, stirring often. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook, stirring often, until blackberries break down and mixture has thickened and reduced to about 2 cups, 30 to 40 minutes.

  2. Remove from heat. Remove and discard sachet. Stir in salt and pepper. Transfer blackberry mixture to a shallow bowl, and spread out to cool. Immediately transfer to refrigerator, and chill, uncovered, 2 hours to preserve vibrant color. Transfer blackberry conserva to an airtight container, and chill at least 2 hours or up to 3 days.

  3. Remove pâté from refrigerator 30 minutes before serving. Serve pâté with blackberry conserva, grilled crusty bread, and whole-grain mustard.

Make Ahead

Duck liver pâté can be made up to 2 days in advance; blackberry conserva can be made 3 days in advance.

Suggested Pairing

Robust but elegant rosé Champagne.

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