Recipe for Crawfish Pate


2 lb crawfish tails - cooked
1 cup leeks - well cleaned, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon salt
2 pinch nutmeg - grated
4 dash tabasco - or to taste
3 cup whipping cream
1/2 cup green peas - canned
1 tablespoon lemon zest
3 tablespoon parsley - finely chopped
2 egg whites - very cold
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon orange zest


Reserve 6 of the largest and most perfect crawfish tails. Combine remaining tails with the sliced leeks in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process until smooth. Add salt, nutmeg, Tabasco, and process again. With motor running, dribble in the chilled whipping cream in a slow steady stream. Shut off processor, taste and correct seasoning. Remove half the mixture to a bowl, cover and refrigerate. Add peas to other half in processor and process until smoooth. Transfer to a bowl, stir in lemon zest and parsley. Cover and refrigerate. Return plain crawfish mixture to the processor bowl. Add egg white and tomato paste and orange zest. Process to combine. Lightly butter a 9x5x3 loaf pan. Spoon the plain crawfish mixture into the poan. Arrange the reserved tails in a line down the center of the pan. Press them lightly into the mixture. Spoon the green pea- crawfish mixture over the other layer and smooth with a spatula. Rap the pan firmly on the work surface several times to eliminate any air bubbles. Wrap the pan in aluminum foil and set in a larger baking pan. Pour boiling water into the baking pan so that it comes about halfway up the sides of the loaf pan. Set all in the center of a preheated 350 F oven and bake for 45 minutes, or until an internal temperature of 130 F is reached. Remove the loaf pan and cool to room temperature. Refrigerate overnight. To unmold, remove the aluminum foil and dip the pan into hot water 30 seconds or so. Run a thin knife around the edge of the pate, set a large plate on top and invert. Remove the pan. TO SERVE COLD: Slice and arrange on plates with crackers. TO SERVE HOT: Slice pate when cold, arrange slices on a buttered baking sheet and cover with foil. Warm gently in a 300 F oven for about 15 minutes. Spoon warm Tomato Coulis sauce (or your choice) onto plates and center a slice of warmed pate on the sauce. Serve immediately. Makes 10 to 12 servings.

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