In the mood for a decadent mid-week supper? I have just the trick. No need to leave the house, we have got the gourmet covered!
If you have ever been to Duck and Waffle in London, you will know that some of the tastiest dishes come in waffle form. This is a something that may have slightly influenced my decision to invest in a new (rather spectacular) piece of kitchen kit from Sage.
Basically I wanted to make amazing waffles (restaurant quality) without shelling out an arm and a leg everytime. The thought was already in place that a waffle maker would be a great way to jazz up my breakfast recipes, but it has turned into rather a staple at all meals. Making a suitable base for anything from poached eggs to homemade waffle sandwiches.
This recipe however is my current favourite. It combines two fantastic things in one dish. A crispy nutty tasting, warm waffle with creamy, smooth chicken liver pate. Served up in one almightily tasty dish.
The plate is finished off with a drizzle of apple and rosemary jelly – the recipe is on the River Cottage website here but you can use any cheese chutneys or jellies you fancy. Onion marmalade, or quince would both work well.
I like to think that if I pitched up with a street food van selling these outside it would be a matter of time before Duck and Waffle would be out of business. Perhaps I am being a little ambitious, but in truth they are stonkingly good! Not to mention cheap to make and impressive looking. Take note, you can treat your loved one to them on date night…
Just in case you are wondering if it is healthy… well the answer would be it isn’t not healthy. The paté contains a lot of good fat and the waffles are made from spelt (which is a far more easily digestible grain than wheat) but it is certainly a bit of a treat and undoubtedly should be eaten with a side of crunchy, green salad. Like this one here
However, because I have used grass fed cows butter, the paté is high in beneficial omega 3 fatty acids (what the cows eat affects the quality of their dairy). Chicken livers are also high in iron. I will say, however, that it is REALLY important to source organic when cooking with offal. It is the job of the liver to filter blood and those from hens pumped with hormones will have given their liver a hell of a job to do, so go for the best quality you can. I get mine from a local butcher.
Spelt Waffle Recipe
- 250g wholemeal spelt flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 heaped tablespoon honey
- 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 450ml milk, of choice
- 2 large eggs
- 20g unsalted butter, melted
Crack the eggs into a bowl, gradually add the milk, then the honey, whisking to combine. Sift in the flour, baking powder and salt then whisk until fully combined. Add the cooled melted butter and gradually stir it through the mixture. It’s important not to stir the mixture too much or your waffles may be tough.
Either pre-heat your waffle iron and cook according to manufacturers instruction or us a griddle pan to make them.
To make with a griddle pan: You can do this by greasing a griddle pan with a little melted butter and placing it over a high heat. Once hot, pour in the waffle batter in and tilt the pan to spread it around evenly. Lower the heat to low and cook the waffles for around 6-7 minutes, or until lightly golden on the bottom. Carefully flip the mixture over and continue to cook for the same time on the other side.
Chicken Liver Pate and Sage Leave Recipe
If you fancy impressing friends, you could serve half a waffle as an elegant starter, or even cut into quarters and handed out as canapé nibbles too.
- 350g organic chicken livers, cleaned and trimmed
- 100g unsalted butter, diced
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 3-4 sprig fresh thyme
- 60ml brandy
- 75ml creme fraiche
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 ground allspice
- a small handful of sage leaves (approx 14-16)
- 1 tablespoon butter
Heat a knob of butter in a frying pan over a medium-low heat. Add the chopped onion and thyme leaves and cook over a low flame until the onion turns soft and translucent, then turn into a food processor. Return the pan back to the stove, increasing the heat to medium-high. Add a knob of butter and the livers. Fry the livers for 1-2 minutes on each sides until browned on the outside but still pink inside. Once cooked, add the livers to the food processor with the onion.
Return the frying pan back to the heat and deglaze the pan with the brandy. Allow the mixture to reduce slightly, for the alcohol to cook off, then add it to the food processor. Finally add the creme fraiche, salt and spices and whizz until smooth. Add all the butter, and whizz again. Taste for seasoning and adjust if need be.
Pass the liver mixture through a sieve into a large bowl, for a smooth and silky texture. Place the sieves mixture into a sealable jar, or ramekin and chill until set.
Heat the remaining tablespoon of butter in a large frying pan, to melt, then add the sage leaves in batches, frying on each side for half a minute or until crispy. Drain on kitchen towel and set aside for use.
Slice the waffles in half on the diagonal, or into quarters. Take 1 tablespoon of chicken liver pate and using a couple of spoons, shape it into a oval blob. Pop it on top of the waffles. Scatter over the sage leaves and drizzle over your chosen chutney or jelly.
Enjoy whilst the waffles are still warm.