SEPTEMBER 2010

Paté Rendezvous

Laurie has been creating pate for more than 20 years and retains a passion for creating delicious new flavors and improving established taste traditions. Alexian now produces single muscle meats, sausage products and over 20 varieties of pates and mousses.
How long have you been making Pâté and when / how did you develop a passion for cooking?

We have been making pate since the early 1980's. My husband, Ewald, born in Stuttgart Germany, had opened this business in 1982 making many different kinds of German and French charcuterie. Rather than "cooking", my passion lies more in the preparation, presentation and the tasting of excellent food.

How did you come up with your Pâté formulas? Any special inspiration?

I have to credit my husband Ewald for developing the many of the classic items in the line. He passed away unexpectedly in 1994 however and I have done much product development since that time. Pate is a wonderful "medium" to carry different flavors. Nearly any flavor profile that excites you can be made in a pate. Some of my most successful creations have been Alexian Pheasant with Rosemary and, our Spiced Apple Mousse which is a mousse made of duck meats , apple schnapps, and mulling spices yummmmmm!

What do you like about Pâté? Do you have any advice for people who have never tried it?

I love to eat pate, and I LOVE the smell of it when it has just come out of the ovens. Seriously though, it is such a playful food. Its like cheese, you can do so much with it and there are so many different varieties to taste and to entertain with. For someone who hasn't tried it I would recommend trying a smooth and creamy mousse first. Our duck liver mousse with Cognac is the best selling pate in our line and even children love it!

When you're developing a new product, how do you start?

Typically, I will decide on a flavor profile, or combination of flavors that I want to use and if I want it to be a creamy mousse, or a more coarse bite. From that point my production manager and myself collaborate on the details of the formula and we formulate small batches that we produce and distribute to Alexian fans for their opinion.

Does Alexian work with any unusual ingredients?

Yes, indeed! We use white asparagus with spinach and broccoli in one of our vegetable pates. We use tofu in all three of our vegan pates, and we use pheasant in our best selling coarse cut pate. We also use a very interesting blend of herbs featuring lavender, in our Herb de Provence pate. At one time we even used rabbit, and venison, but, those were not favored by American consumers.

We also use liquor in all of our meat pates. In addition to the typical port wine and sherry, we also use Brandy, Grand Marnier Vermouth liquor and Apple Schnapps.

When you entertain, what is your favorite way to serve Pâté? How about when eating it as a snack?

I like the sampler concept. How fun is it to try several different pates lined up next to each other as one would find at a trade show. Add more festivity by asking your guests to guess what each pate is!!!!

Believe it or not, my favorite way to eat pate is by spreading a creamy mousse on a warm English style muffin. Delicious! A most satisfying way to get your protein before you start your day!

What is the most essential item in your kitchen?

That is a very easy question. The answer is KNIVES. Knives are very personal. The way they perform of course, but also how they are balanced and how they feel in your palm. My favorite knives that I reach for most often are the boning, slicing and Chef's for chopping.

What are your passions outside of cooking?

I have a 31 ft sailboat that I race off the New Jersey shore. I also am an avid tennis player and skier. And, I am a voracious reader. I read everything and anything but I like biography, history, and travel and adventure the best.

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Alexianpate.com features serving ideas, recipes & more ways to savor Alexian's award winning, 100 percent natural pates & terrines. Alexian pates are made with all natural ingredients & come in delicious varieties. From pork liver pate to chicken liver pate to vegetarian & spreadable mousse varieties, Alexian's gourmet lineup is 100 percent all natural and sinfully delicious!

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