1950s Recipes + Menus

Cold Chicken Loaf

The Way We Cooked: Vintage Gourmet

July 1950

Remove the breast meat from a 4-pound chicken or capon and cut it into long strips, making about 6 strips from each side. Cut 1/4 pound lean veal, 1/4 pound lean pork, 1/4 pound fat pork, 1/4 pound cooked ham, and 1/4 pound cooked ox tongue into strips about the size or the chicken strips about the size or the chicken strips. Put all these strips of meat into a bowl and add 1/2 tablespoon salt, 1/3 cup cognac or sherry, and 2 shallots or 1 small onion, finely chopped, a bit of thyme, 1 bay leaf, and 3 sprigs parsley. Cover the bowl and let the strips marinate in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight.

Make a chicken forcemeat by grinding together 1/4 pound lean veal, 1/4 pound lean pork, and all the remaining meat from the legs, wings, et cetera of the chicken, with sinews removed. Season the ground meat with 1/2 tablespoon salt and add 2 eggs, beaten. Drain the liquor from the marinated strips of chicken breast and the other meats and add it to the ground-meat mixture.

Line a buttered 12-inch loaf pan with pastry and trim the edges evenly, leaving a 1/2-inch border above the edge of the pan. Then line it with a layer of crępes. Follow the instructions given in the recipe for pâté de veau en croûte.

Cover the crêpes with 1/4 of the chicken forcemeat, spreading it evenly and firmly against the bottom and sides of the pan. On this place 1/3 of the marinated meat strips, alternating them so that a mosaic of any pattern will be formed when the galantine is finally cut. Cover with another layer of 1/4 of the ground meat and 3 layers of meat strips. Sliced truffles and chopped pistachio nuts may also be used in this chicken loaf, as in the pâté de veau en croûte.

Cover the top forcemeat layer with a layer of crêpes and place the upper crust over all, following the instructions given in the recipe for pâté de veau en croûte. Bake the meat loaf in a moderate oven (350° F.) for 1 1/2 hours. Brush the top crust with egg and water once or twice during the baking period and should it start to overbrown, cover it with a piece of buttered heavy paper.

Let the pâté cool in the loaf pan in which it was baked, turn it out on a serving platter, and chill it in the refrigerator until ready to serve. Garnish with lettuce nests, water cress, or sprigs of parsley, gherkins, green and ripe olives, or small radish roses.

This exclusive recipe is pulled directly from Gourmet's archive. It has not been re-tested by our food editors since it was published in the magazine, but it's a pretty good indication of the kinds of things we once cooked—and ate—with great pleasure.

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