Chef's Recipes

Crostini with smoked eel pâté and glacé beetroot

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for crostini with smoked eel pâté and glacé beetroot.

By Brigitte Hafner
  • 25 mins preparation
  • 30 mins cooking plus cooling
  • Serves 8 - 10
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Crostini with smoked eel pâté and glacé beetroot
"I love smoked fish, and this eel pâté is delicate, rich and moreish. It goes well with just about any drink and can be made a few days ahead of serving." This recipe makes 24 crostini.


  • 1 sourdough baguette, thinly sliced
  • 80 ml extra-virgin olive oil (1/3 cup)
Smoked eel pâté
  • 40 gm butter, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 golden shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 smoked eel (450gm), skin removed, bones removed, coarsely flaked
  • 3 thyme sprigs
  • 150 ml dry white wine
  • 250 gm crème fraîche
Glacé beetroot
  • 2 tsp whole allspice
  • 2 tsp black peppercorns
  • 250 gm caster sugar
  • 250 ml balsamic vinegar (1 cup)
  • 1 medium beetroot (190gm), peeled, thinly sliced on a mandolin
  • 1 cinnamon quill


  • 1
    For eel pâté, heat butter and oil in a deep frying pan over medium heat, add shallots and sauté until pale golden (5-6 minutes). Add eel, thyme and salt to taste (be careful; smoked eel is salty), then stir until eel starts to brown (2-3 minutes). Turn up heat to medium-high and deglaze pan with white wine, simmering until reduced by half (3-5 minutes). Remove from heat, pour mixture into a bowl and refrigerate to cool (45 minutes). Discard thyme, then pulse in a food processor until smooth. Whip crème fraîche in a bowl until soft peaks form and fold into eel mixture. Check seasoning and refrigerate until required. Smoked eel pâté will keep for 4 days in the fridge.
  • 2
    For glacé beetroot, combine spices, sugar and vinegar in a saucepan and bring to the boil, then simmer over medium heat until reduced by a quarter (10 minutes). Strain into a clean pan, discarding spices. Add beetroot to liquid and gently simmer over medium heat until beetroot is tender and slightly sticky (10-15 minutes). This can be prepared a few days in advance; store in a sealed plastic container. When ready to serve, drain beetroot on absorbent paper.
  • 3
    Preheat oven to 220C. Place baguette on oven trays, drizzle with oil and toast in the oven, turning once, until golden on both sides (8-10 minutes). Cool completely. Crostini will keep in a sealed container for up to 2 days.
  • 4
    To serve, scoop 2 tsp of the eel pâté onto each crostini and top with a slice of glacé beetroot.


Drink Suggestion: Egly-Ouriet Brut Rosé Grand Cru or Eastern Peake Pinot Taché. Drink suggestion by James Broadway