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Terrine at a Glance


France, Western Europe

Type of Charcuterie


Main Ingredient

Typical Ingredients

Meat(s) of choice, onion, salt, pepper, herbs and spices

Other Names

Pate en terrine, pate de Campagne, country style terrine, cooked terrines, uncooked terrines, fresh terrines, pressed terrines, set terrines, eggs and cream terrines, meat loaf, pork terrine, beef terrine, chicken terrine, fish terrine, liver terrine, duck terrine, game terrine

Terrine Description

The word terrine is often associated with a glazed earthenware cooking dish with a cover used both in the early times and today. However, the term may also refer to a type of charcuterie product that comes from France in Western Europe.

Although force meats and pates were long part of the usual foods cooked, the dish was created in the 1820's by French chef Antonin CarĂªme who placed pate meat in this earthenware dish and cooked it giving terrine its name.

Terrine can be made from many different types of meat ranging from pork and beef to poultry, game and offal. There are also several different ways that this prepared meat dish can be made. Commonly, terrines are classified as either cooked or uncooked. These can also be pressed, set or made with eggs and cream.

Fresh and pressed terrines are usually made by layering cooked or raw ingredients then weighing it down and leaving it to set overnight. An aspic or gelatin may also be poured over the layered ingredients.

Cooked terrines on the other hand are made by creating a force meat, adding coarsely chopped meats, vegetables, nuts, or fruits and cooking it in an earthenware dish or tin lined with bacon, greens and others. Eggs and cream may also be added to the force meat.

The texture and flavor of a terrine may vary greatly according to the type. Fresh set and pressed terrines are usually soft. If aspic or gelatin is included, then a jelly like feel can be observed.

Cooked terrines on the other hand are usually firm with a rich, smooth and creamy texture. Various consistencies may also be found within these depending on the ingredients used.

There are many different ways that a terrine may be served and eaten. This highly versatile charcuterie product is usually served chilled or at room temperature. These are usually sliced thickly and may be served as is, with a salad, some bread or pickled fruits and vegetables. It may also be used for making a sandwich.

Photo Credit: Sifu Renka
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