The key to making good pate is using fresh, organic duck or chicken livers. I got mine from The Healthy Butcher (call first as they don't always have them). This recipe is adapted from Julia Child's chicken liver mousse recipe in Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Be warned that there's A LOT of butter in the pate, which is what makes it so rich and amazing.
1 lb fresh, organic duck livers
2 tbsp shallots, minced
2 tbsp butter + 1/2 C melted butter
1/3 C cognac
1/4 C whipping cream
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp allspice
a few cracks of black pepper
1. Over medium heat, saute the shallots and livers in the 2 tbsp of butter until they're firm, but still pink inside. Place into a blender or food processor.
2. Add cognac to the same pan. On high heat, boil until it reduces to about 2 tbsp worth. Add to blender.
3. Add cream, salt, pepper and allspice to the mixture in the blender and process until smooth. Add the melted butter and continue to puree until very smooth and light.
4. Sieve the pate to make it extra smooth. Chill for at least a few hours or overnight (tightly covered).