Foie gras - alternatives

21 October 2014


Today Vanessa Feltz's show on BBC Radio London is discussing a butcher's shop in Primrose Hill which is importing foie gras pate from France. Our Chief Executive Lynne Elliot is appearing on the show to discuss this issue.  

The production of foie gras is illegal in the UK because of the suffering of geese as workers force feed the geese with grain and fat, causing their livers to swell to up to 10 times their normal size. 

The production of foie gras is unnecessary.

Alternative delicious pates are available without this cruel practice, Cordon Vert's principal tutor Alex Connell has a few ideas to try.

pate ingredients

Making your own pate is very easy and quick to do.

The great thing about making your own pate is that you can play with the falvours and textures, taste as you go adjusting if necessary. 
Simply blend your ingredients until you have a smooth thick paste, or not so smooth if you want a rougher texture. Transfer to  ramekins and allow to chill before serving.  If using a lot of mushrooms cooking them first allow the liquid to evaporate so you don’t end up with a wet pate.

Blue cheese and sage pate – serves 4
150g blue cheese, 50ml cream, 8 fresh sage leaves, chives, black pepper,.  Place the cheese, cream, half the sage a few chives and a little black pepper into a food processor. Transfer to 4 ramekins. Allow to chill for 30 minutes then garnish each pot with a whole sage leaf and a little chopped chives. Serve with triangles of toast. (Vegan cheese and soya cream could be used.) 

Other great combinations to try are: 

Mushroom, olive and garlic

Chilli, sundried tomato and hazelnuts

Chestnut, port and thyme 

Serves 4 – 6
Equipment: Processor , piping bag and nozzle, baking sheet


50g onion, very finely chopped

2 tbsp olive oil

200g flat mushrooms, wiped and chopped

175g fresh smoked tofu

40g almonds, lightly roasted and ground

40g white breadcrumbs

1 tbsp lemon juice

2 tsp shoyu

Pepper to taste

1 ½ - 2tbsp fresh sage leaves, finely chopped
To serve

2 white pitta bread

2 large tomatoes

1 round lettuce

1 jar marinated artichokes (optional)

To garnish a lemon twist


1.Gently sauté the onion in the olive oil until soft but not coloured. Add the chopped mushroom and continue to cook until the mushroom is just cooked. 
2.Place the mushroom and onion mixture in a food processor together with the remaining ingredients excluding the sage and process until smooth. Season with tamari or shoyu and pepper. Remove from the processor, put into a bowl and mix in the chopped sage leaves. Chill for at least 30 minutes for the flavours to blend. 
3.Pipe into tomato halves or ramekin dishes. Alternatively form into quenelles. Garnish with each with a lemon twist. Serve on a bed of lettuce with the marinated artichoke hearts (if using) and pitta bread thins. 
4.For the pitta bread thins: Preheat oven to 200°C.
5.Lightly toast the pitta bread until puffed up but not hard.  Split them open and cut apart to make four thin breads. Cut each piece into 4 and place on a baking sheet
6.Bake in the oven for 3 minutes until the pieces are crisp. Cool on a wire rack. 
Copyright © The Vegetarian Society 2011

Serves 4

1 tin of Marigold braised tofu, drained

1 tbsp of chipotle en adobo

3 spring onions, chopped

1 mild, red chilli, chopped

1 tbsp nori flakes

1 lemon, juice and zest  

Make the pate by simply blending together all the ingredients in a small food processor.Transfer to several ramekins and allow to chill before serving. 

Copyright © The Vegetarian Society 2012


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The Vegetarian Society of the United Kingdom Limited, Parkdale, Dunham Road, Altrincham WA14 4QG
Registered Charity No. 259358, Registered Company No. 959115 (England and Wales)

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