03 Sep2009


We are always so pleased and thrilled to receive food gifts from friends and family. There is just something so heartwarming about homemade dishes or delicacies, or special or unusual food items acquired from expert cooks, small artisanal producers, provincial sources, or even while on foreign trips. Often, it isn’t the cost that matters, but the thought that goes into the food. Because of this blog, family and friends have focused even more on discovering and sharing unique finds, and we often get unique salts, handcarried honeycombs, herbs and spices, dried fishes, etc. during the course of the year. But sometimes, my jaw literally drops when food gifts like this one are delivered to our home. A good friend warned me by text that a special present was on its way over (from him and his family) for my birthday, and that it needed to be refrigerated. The doorbell rang, and a nondescript bag was brought to the dining table and within there was a little log all wrapped up, almost like a small salami…


When i unwrapped the paper and ribbons, felt the relative density/weight, and cold temperature, I was getting giddy wondering if it was what I thought it might be. Unravelling several meters of plastic wrap, I was both thrilled but utterly shocked to behold, a torchon of roughly 1-1.2 kilos of pate de foie gras with minced truffles! Honestly, I had never seen a torchon that large in a home setting… the last time I saw something like this was at Le Grand Epicerie, in Paris! Strictly speaking this torchon was probably made tightly bound with plastic wrap, rather than the traditional method of using a towel or tourchon. OMG, is all I could think. If I ate all of this, I would almost certainly keel over from organ failure of some sort. There must have been over 7,000+ calories in this one little log of joy. After egg yolks and caviar, pate has the third most cholesterol per gram in any food if my cursory research is to be believed (see this link)! Consuelo de bobo, pate is only the 10th most calorie packed food per gram (see this link). :)


A quick look around the kitchen yielded a loaf of buttery, almost brioche-like bread. This was cut into small rectangles without crusts and toasted lightly. We spread some unsalted butter on the bread. Laid on a generous slice of pate, topped that with a sliver of cornichon and served this with some flaky sea salt on the side… It was absolutely delicious, and incredibly decadent. I had four servings of this, and even with friends over, we barely managed to consume 20% of the torchon.


A few days later, we enjoyed the pate in thick slices inside crusty rolls. It sounds a bit excessive to eat it this way, but I can assure you it was stunningly good. Similar to this experience from several months ago. A huge thank you to the generous friends who sent this over, it was an incredible and delicious birthday surprise! I can not have a blood test for several more months. Several more months. :)



  1. betty q. says:

    MM…you should have covered the top photo with a FISHPAN and let us guess what is underneath the fishpan!!!!

    Sep 3, 2009 | 4:50 am


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  3. sha says:

    Yumm.. I always keep some pate de foie gras , when am so tired and stressed out from work, I would toast a baguette and top it with chunk of foie gras , sprinkled with Maldon..
    Thats a treat ;-)

    Sep 3, 2009 | 5:01 am

  4. Jimbro says:

    I envy you MM, you seem to get lots of food gifts! :D You’ll never go hungry.

    Sep 3, 2009 | 5:59 am

  5. Vanessa says:

    Were that we all had such thoughtful friends! :-)

    Sep 3, 2009 | 6:51 am

  6. deirdregurl says:

    wow, i noticed your napkin. it isn’t your regular napkin but one that is made from gauze? is that right? clever way of presenting the food this way…

    Sep 3, 2009 | 6:54 am

  7. Marketman says:

    deirdregurl, they are white linen “napkins” used for hors d’oeuvres, so after you munch on the “snack” or “appetizer”, you can wipe any greasiness or muck on your fingers on the napkins. We bought linen material by the yard, and had the little napkins sewn rather than buying them. They are useful for cocktail parties.

    Sep 3, 2009 | 6:59 am

  8. deirdregurl says:

    interesting, MM! well, needless to say–gagayahin ko na naman to hehe many thanks!

    Sep 3, 2009 | 7:08 am

  9. sunshines_mommy says:

    wow. this is absolutely droolworthy. despite the damning evidence of all the cholesterol smeared on the plastic wrap. wow. do let us know once you’ve consumed the log; i’m curious to see how long it will take! :)

    Sep 3, 2009 | 7:38 am

  10. viva says:

    Hi MM,

    What is Maldon?

    Sep 3, 2009 | 8:20 am

  11. Marketman says:

    viva, a type of sea salt, from Maldon, France England.

    Sep 3, 2009 | 8:23 am

  12. millet says:


    great presentation with the cocktail napkins! made the tidbits look utterly healthy and harmless :-)

    Sep 3, 2009 | 8:42 am

  13. Thel from Florida says:

    Hi MM,

    I have lots of Maldon but no pate. Please let me know the brand you prefer and that would be the one I will buy. Thank you kindly.

    Sep 3, 2009 | 8:52 am

  14. Marketman says:

    Thel, mostly the foie is made from scratch, like this one. But if you have to buy canned, Rougie is a pretty good brand, I have found. Most good specialty food shops should have a pretty decent pate de foie on offer, just buy a little bit of that instead of the canned if you have the opportunity to do so…

    Sep 3, 2009 | 8:55 am

  15. gtrine says:

    Note to self: do not visit foodblogs when hungry!

    While this is typically true anywaythis makes me long for foie gras. Sigh it will have to wait for economically better times.

    So jealous! Congrats and happy birthday.

    Sep 3, 2009 | 9:07 am

  16. Artisan Chocolatier says:

    MM….tsk, tsk, tsk. This is not good for you and your family. Too much cholesterol, etc. Why don’t you bring it over to Cebu and give it to me….I’ll take care of disposing it…….hehehehe

    Sep 3, 2009 | 9:39 am

  17. joyce says:

    the 2nd pic of the torchon looks like a monster. a sinful delicious, calorie laden monster hehe ;P best shared with family and friends. whats the yellow stuff around the torchon? butter? fat?

    Sep 3, 2009 | 9:44 am

  18. Cris Jose says:

    Hi, MM! I think my blood pressure rose a few notches after seeing the photos… LOL.

    Sep 3, 2009 | 10:20 am

  19. Marketman says:

    joyce, solidified duck lard. :)

    Sep 3, 2009 | 10:50 am

  20. Hershey says:

    WOWWWWWWWWWWW that looks amazing lolz :D have you tried eating it as is? wonder how it feels like hahahaha

    Sep 3, 2009 | 11:08 am

  21. alicia says:

    oh man, you’re killing me with this post! If you have any left- try the foie in some coddled eggs and cream sprinkled with some truffle salt and fresh tarragon-then dip some baguette slices or brioche- heaven!

    Sep 3, 2009 | 12:13 pm

  22. chrisb says:

    Foie gras heaven indeed. This brings to mind a lady I know who loves foie gras so much she said she has eaten it as ulam to rice on one occasion. Intrigued, I tried it but it was foie gras overload for me- I get a headache just thinking about it.
    Btw, Maldon is in England =)

    Sep 3, 2009 | 12:54 pm

  23. Lelhani says:

    Did you enjoy this with a Sauternes or Eiswine?

    Sep 3, 2009 | 12:57 pm

  24. APM says:

    Hi Marketman

    Last Chrismas Rustan’s Le Gourmet was offering vacuum sealed whole torchons of foie gras for sale. Later on they were selling slices by the gram. I found it quite convenient especially since I did not want to invest the time or the refrigerator space in making my own torchon. Although I have to say that had I done so the savings in money would have been substantial.

    If you surf the web several bloggers have attempted making torchons of foie gras using the French Laundry recipe. I don’t think making a torchon of foie gras would be a challenge for you Market man.

    Sep 3, 2009 | 12:58 pm

  25. Lelhani says:

    chrisb–is correct. Maldon Salt from England


    Sep 3, 2009 | 12:59 pm

  26. bebot says:

    Beautiful..Is Zetia and Caduet on menu as well :)

    Sep 3, 2009 | 12:59 pm

  27. Marketman says:

    Lelhani and chrisb, yes, absolutely you are right. I should have remembered the Jamie Oliver visit to the place where the salt is made. Previous comment edited. Many thanks.

    Sep 3, 2009 | 1:16 pm

  28. bagito says:

    Yes, I’m also curious as to what wine you paired this with, MM, as Lelhani above asked…

    Sep 3, 2009 | 1:18 pm

  29. Marketman says:

    APM, I have made a pate de foie gras before. One on low heat instead of the cold cure with salt method. It turned out well. But I try not to make it often as it is quite literally, deadly. One of our guests at a Christmas dinner once ate about 1 duck liver worth of pate, not really knowing what it was, and later in the evening started to fill ill and overfed, and when I told him he had eaten some 3000 calories just as an appetizer, he nearly passed out. :)

    Sep 3, 2009 | 1:21 pm

  30. Marketman says:

    bagito and lelhani, this was an impromptu lunch by myself dish. Of course I had it with a Diet Coke! Heehee. :)

    Sep 3, 2009 | 1:52 pm

  31. MrsKookie says:

    :P~ Im drooling!

    Sep 3, 2009 | 3:50 pm

  32. roelm says:

    Hi Marketman,

    Don’t be too concerned about the foie gras calories especially if it is goose liver.

    According to the Weston A. Price foundation page,


    goose liver paste actually has the second highest concentration of vitamin K2 in their listing, second only to natto. Vitamin K2 is actually quite essential to good bone and dental health and among many other things helps to maintain flexibility of the arteries by preventing arterial calcification. The better your Vitamin K2 intake, the better your chances of having good cardiovascular health plus good bones, teeth and even skin. By the way, Vitamin K2 is fat-soluble, so you can only absorb it if you eat fat. It is found either in animal food or in bacterially fermented plant food.

    Sep 3, 2009 | 7:13 pm

  33. Marketman says:

    roelm, OMG, I am so using that claim as an excuse to indulge further. :) thanks.

    Sep 3, 2009 | 8:13 pm

  34. Vicky Go says:

    Speak about decadence! I think foie gras is more decadent (& tastier) than caviar which is way over rated! Incidentally when you were in NYC have you ever eaten at Le Bonne Soupe – a very unassuming French bistro that serves “home made pates & terrines” – country style menu, reasonably priced – on 53 or 54 bet 7th & 6th? I hope they stay “forever” – what w rising real rental & taxes! It’s a tiny gem & serves brunch on weekends!

    Sep 3, 2009 | 9:54 pm

  35. psychomom says:

    hold on let me wipe my drool…..
    interestingly TIME magazine had an article on “ethical foie gras.’ i did not know that foie gras came from force fed geese… i can only imagine the taste… hhaayyy… sarap….

    Sep 3, 2009 | 10:34 pm

  36. Alana says:

    oh my that looks so good! how else can you eat?

    Sep 3, 2009 | 11:24 pm

  37. Alana says:

    *oh my that looks so good!

    (sorry for spamming. i wanted to delete my previous comment)

    Sep 3, 2009 | 11:26 pm

  38. Pat says:

    i been reading your blog for the longest time and this is the first time im leaving a comment.

    since you got load of foie gras in your place.would it be possible that the great MM make a “101 Ways to Succumb a Foie Gras” series.

    i love foie gras so please.please.please.post more of your foie adventure.thanks.

    Sep 4, 2009 | 4:18 am

  39. Bertie B says:

    My favorite food!!! Given a chance this would be my last meal before my execution – no need to worry about the Cholesterol then :-)

    IMHO by far the best (and most reasonably priced) Foie Gras to be found in MM is prepared by Marc Aubrey at Je Suis Gourmand in the fort

    Sep 4, 2009 | 7:45 am

  40. nikita says:

    mmm torchon :) sadly enough i don’t think i’ll ever get to enjoy any foie products the way i used to.. prepping and rolling log after log of torchon for work isn’t as fun as you think it would be. wish i could go back to the day that i first had a slice of torchon on brioche with a thin layer of whole grain mustard and cornichons.. mmm

    Sep 5, 2009 | 7:43 am

  41. sha says:

    Am going to be in London soon, surely will bring Maldon back to the US and am bringing some foie gras to Athens…. when I miss France then I just open my fridge et voila treat myself silly….

    Sep 5, 2009 | 9:03 am

  42. marissewalangkaparis says:

    Love pate…..mmmmmm

    Sep 11, 2009 | 9:47 pm

  43. mei kwei says:

    Wow, i envy you. foie gras and truffle in a torchon- unbelievable heaven. good for you MM- wish i had a sampling. I used to eat it after i was introduced to foie gras by one of my culinary teachers. had one here in little owl but i guess it will be my last one. since then, i have this guilt about eating foie gras and how they force feed the ducks in france. for now i will just suffice myself with those last bite i had.

    Mar 11, 2010 | 5:24 am


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