Our hostesses this month, Evelyne of Cheap Ethnic Eatz, and Valerie of a The Chocolate Bunny, chose delicious pate with freshly baked bread as their June Daring Cook’s challenge! They’ve provided us with 4 different pate recipes to choose from and are allowing us to go wild with our homemade bread choice.

This month was my first foray into the Daring Cooks, and I was excited to get the chance to try my hand at making pâté. Traditionally, pâté is meat-based, and often includes liver, or gizzards, or other animal parts. Luckily, our hostesses also included recipes for fish and vegetable varieties. Since pâté is not usually eaten on its own, we were also required to make a bread to accompany our pâté. While we were required to use one of the three pâté recipes provided, we were given free range to choose any bread recipe we wanted. The only other restriction was that the pâté had to be baked or refrigerated (or both) for a significant amount of time, so that it would have to be unmolded into a serving dish.

I chose to make the Tricolor Vegetable Pâté that was provided. The pâté is comprised of three different layers – a white bean layer, a red pepper layer, and a pesto layer. I decided to halve the recipe since there would only be two of us eating it. The recipe was fairly straight forward and the only trouble I ran into was when it came time to assemble the various layers for the pâté. The red pepper layer completely absorbed the pesto layer! In a moment of panic I quickly threw together the other half of the pesto recipe, thinking maybe I could just add that on top of the little pesto that was still showing. I really wanted to get the tricolor effect when the final pâté was unmolded. Unfortunately, this pesto pretty much got absorbed too, so I didn’t really achieve the tricolor presentation that I was going for. Although once the pâté was sliced, you could get a little glimpse of the tricolor action.

The bread recipe I chose to make was the 100% Whole Wheat and Flaxseed Bread recipe from Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day. I’m happy to say that this recipe was a total success. I actually think it was my best loaf of bread to date, and was a great accompaniment to the pâté.

You can check out both recipes after the jump.

Tricolor Vegetable Pâté
from Bon Appétit Oct 1993 on Epicurious
Yields one 10 by 5 inch terrine or loaf pan

Line your pan with plastic wrap, overlapping sides.

White Bean Layer

2 x 15-ounce / 900 ml cans cannellini (white kidney beans), rinsed, drained thoroughly
1 tbsp / 15 ml fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp / 15 ml olive oil
1 tbsp / 15 ml minced fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried
2 garlic cloves, pressed

Mash beans in large bowl. Add lemon juice, olive oil, oregano and garlic and blend until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Spread bean mixture evenly on bottom of prepared pan.

Red Pepper Layer
7-ounce / 210 ml jar roasted red bell peppers, drained, chopped
3/4 cup / 180 ml crumbled feta cheese (about 4 ounces)

Combine peppers and feta in processor and blend until smooth. Spread pepper mixture evenly over bean layer in prepared dish.

Pesto Layer
2 garlic cloves
1 cup / 240 ml fresh basil leaves
1 cup / 240 ml fresh Italian parsley leaves
1/4 cup / 60 ml toasted pine nuts
3 tbsp / 45 ml olive oil
1/2 cup / 120 ml low-fat ricotta cheese

Mince garlic in processor. Add basil, parsley and pine nuts and mince. With machine running, gradually add oil through feed tube and process until smooth. Mix in ricotta. Spread pesto evenly over red pepper layer.

Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. [Refrigerate as long as possible, min 8 hours. Freeze it 30 min before unmolding.]

To unmold, invert pâté onto serving platter. Peel off plastic wrap from pâté.

**I halved the recipe for the bean and red pepper layer, and used the full recipe for the pesto layer.

To see the other pâté recipes and all of the other great creations please visit the Daring Kitchen website.

100% Whole Wheat and Flaxseed Bread
adapted from Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day
Yields one 2-pound loaf

1/4 c ground flax seed
3 1/2 c whole wheat flour
3/4 T granulated yeast (or 1 packet)
1/2 T kosher salt (you can increase or decrease to taste)
1/8 c vital wheat gluten
1 3/4  c + 2 T lukewarm water

Whisk together flaxseed, flour, yeast, salt and vital wheat gluten in a large bowl.

Add the water and mix with with a spoon (without kneading). You will most likely need to use wet hands to get the last bit of flour combined.

Cover the bowl (not airtight), and allow to rest at room temperature for 2 hours.

Dust the surface of the dough with flour and quickly shape into a loaf. Place the loaf in a slightly greased loaf pan and allow to rest, loosely covered with plastic wrap for 40 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350◦F. Place an empty metal broiler tray on any other rack that won’t interfere with the rising bread.

Just before baking use a pastry brush to paint the top of the loaf with water. Use a serrated knife to slash the loaf diagonally with parallel 1/4 inch deep cuts.

Place the bread in the oven. Quickly (and carefully) pour 1 cup of hot water into the broiler tray, and close the oven door. Bake for 50-60 minutes.

Allow the bread to cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.

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