Pâté is a delightful and delicious dish that can be served in many different ways. You don't have to be an expert on how to serve pâté if you have decided to add this savory treat to your menu.
However, with such a limited shelf-life, you may want to learn the best ways to handle this delicate fare. Commercial refrigerators and freezers can be a harsh environment for pâté. Understanding the best ways to serve and store pâté will ensure that constantly offer the best tasting pâté without incurring additional costs from waste due to spoilage.
What is Pâté?
Pâté is a type of spreadable meat product, usually made with liver or ground meats. It is combined with wine and spices and cooked down into a paste texture. It's high in protein and rich in vitamins, so it makes for an excellent appetizer or light meal. The word pâté comes from the French verb pâter, which means "to pound."
To serve your favorite pâtés, keep them refrigerated until you're ready to serve. Pâté will last about 7-8 days in the fridge before spoiling. If you want your food to stay fresh for longer, then freezing is necessary.
Frequently Asked Questions About Serving Pâté
If you are looking to offer pâté dishes in your establishment, perhaps it's time to learn more about this delicacy. Patrons of your restaurant will have questions before they order. Ensure that you are prepared to answer them.
The most commonly asked questions about pâté:
• What is pâté made of? Typical pâté is made of duck, venison, pork, chicken, or fish.
• How is pâté made? There are many different recipes for pâté. Common ingredients include wine, onions, herbs, spices, and sometimes vegetables.
• How do you serve pâté? Most pate is served as an appetizer with bread or crackers. You can learn more about ways to service pâté below.
Another question people will ask is, can you freeze left-over pâté? The answer is yes. However, a process should be followed to ensure that you keep your pâté fresher longer.
What You Need to Know About Freezing Pate
Pâté, such as the one you make from scratch, has a short shelf life. One way to tell if pâté has gone sour is when it begins to break down or the presence of a foul smelling liquid.
When kept in the freezer, you can prolong the shelf life of pâté to two or three months, or more. That being said, pâté is best consumed immediately for optimal flavor. The spread has a high-fat content which means flavor change is likely if pâté is kept in the freezer too long.
1. Package in Single Servings
It is essential to pack single-serving portions of homemade pâté. Defrosting a whole container can take up too much time and may create waste. Therefore, it’s better to have the option of grabbing small packs that are ready when you need them.
A pro-tip for freezing pâté in single-size portions is to freeze them in an ice tray or a similar designed freezable container. The standard ice cube tray holds one ounce per well - the perfect serving size for pâté.
2. Cover with Wax Paper
Once the pâté has finished freezing, take out the mold or ice tray and carefully remove each portion. A layer of wax paper should be placed over each frozen pâté. This will help prevent freezer burn from forming.
3. Place in Resealable Plastic Bag
Once you have wrapped individual portions of pâté in wax paper and place the entire batch inside a resealable plastic bag. Squeeze out as much air as possible before you seal it to ensure longer shelf life. You can also vacuum-seal the package. However, this is recommended for long-term storage. If you will be serving this pâté within two weeks of freezing, vacuum-sealing is unnecessary.
4. Label with Date and Pate Type
Next, you will want to label the pâté. You must include the type of pâté, the date it was made or purchased, and some will even write on it a "best if used by" date. This is especially helpful if you have vacuum-sealed the package for long-term storage.
Best Ways to Serve Pate
When looking for the best ways to serve pâté, you must consider how people eat pâté. There are many commons recipes.
When developing your pâté recipe, consider what you like and what your customers have been saying about their favorite savory flavors. Asking these questions will help you discover the recipes your patrons will keep coming back to order.
Here are some of the best ways to serve pate:
• French Bread and Duck Liver Pate: You can also use crackers or pita slices. However, French bread with traditional French pâté made with duck or goose is the most common way to serve pâté as an appetizer.
• Finger Sandwiched with Pate Spread: Another common way to serve pâté is to use it as the meat in a finger sandwich. Mayonnaise and a cucumber slice are all you need to make these fancy, pâté filled finger foods.
• Cheese Platter with Vinegar-Pickled Vegetables: This platter can be served as an appetizer or a light meal. You can select spreadable cheese such as Brie and serve your pâté as a spread. However, it is much easier to eat if both the cheeses and the pâté are cut into cubes.
The Best Ways to Defrost and Serve Your Pate
Before serving frozen pâté, there are two methods for thawing it. The less convenient of the two is to transfer the frozen portions of the pâté from your reach-in freezers to your refrigerator and leave it overnight until it has thawed entirely.
Alternately, you can also defrost a frozen portion at room temperature. Set it out on the counter and let it sit there while it thaws slowly. However, you will need to be attentive as the pâté softens.
Another way to defrost the frozen pâté is to place the portion inside a resealable plastic bag, seal it and then submerge the whole thing in a bowl of tap water. Leave it to thaw for an hour or two, and it’s ready to be eaten.
Now that you know the best ways to prepare and store pâté, you can confidently serve it to your customers.