Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Almost Award-Wining Seared Duck Breast with a Black Currant-Pink Peppercorn Sauce Served over Creamy Gorgonzola Polenta and Wilted Baby Spinach

Serves 8

This recipe was entered in the 2010 San Pellegrino Almost Famous Chef Competition. It didn't make the final cut but is still pretty darn tasty! The overall winner will be announced in March 2010.


Seared Duck Breast with a Black Currant-Pink Peppercorn Sauce

8 Muscovy Duck Breasts
1 oz Shallot, Minced
4 oz Crème de Cassis
1 oz Dried Black Currants
12 Pink Pepper Corns, Crushed
16 oz Brown Veal Stock
½ oz Parsley, Minced
2 oz Cold Butter, Cubed
Salt & Black Pepper

1) Pre-heat oven to 400°F
2) Place Currants and Crème de Cassis in small mixing bowl and set aside
3) Pre-heat dry sauté pans
4) Score duck fat and season both sides with Salt and Pepper
5) Sear duck breast by placing fat side down (4 breasts in each pan)
6) Once fat has browned, flip breasts and allow the underside of the duck to brown
7) Finish duck breasts in the oven for an additional 6-9 minutes until med-rare, flipping breasts ½ way through cooking
8) Remove duck from the oven and place breasts on roasting rack, with a sheet pan underneath, to rest
9) Place stock in small saucepan and bring to a simmer
10) Discard excess fat in sauté pans and return the pans to the stove over medium heat
11) Add half of the shallots to each sauté pan and deglaze each pan with 2.5oz of the Crème de Cassis and Black Currants
12) Combine contents into 1 sauté pan
13) Stir in Pink Peppercorns and Veal Stock
14) Reduce until nappe (a syrupy consist
15) Add Parsley and Monte au buerre
16) Season with salt and pepper
17) Place duck on hot sizzle plates and return to the oven to reheat before serving


Creamy Gorgonzola Polenta

24 oz Milk
16 oz Chicken Stock
8 oz Polenta
2 oz Butter
1 Tsp Salt
8 oz Gorgonzola
Salt & White Pepper

1) Bring Milk, Stock, Butter and Salt to a boil in a large Saucepan
2) Whisk in polenta and continue to stirring until the polenta begins to thicken
3) Cover and reduce heat
4) Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally
5) Add Gorgonzola and stir until completely incorporated
6) Season with Salt & White Pepper


Wilted Baby Spinach

2 lbs Baby Spinach,
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1 oz Olive Oil
Salt & Black Pepper

1) Pre-heat large Sauté Pan
2) Add Olive Oil and toss in Spinach and Garlic
3) Once spinach begins to wilt remove from heat
4) Season with salt and pepper
5) Serve immediately


To Plate

1) Place an approximate 3oz bed of wilted spinach in the center of the plate and top with 6oz of the polenta (being careful not to entirely cover the spinach)
2) Place the duck breast that has been sliced on the biased on top of the polenta with the fat side up
3) With a saucing spoon, spoon 1oz black currant sauce over the duck breast to finish

*Photo to come!


Meghan said...

Wow! Lovely recipes and love the way you describe plating the whole deal. Sounds like you are cooking up a storm! Wonderful. I am looking fwd to tryin the polenta/spinach. Sorry...not much a duck fan. Could that be subbed out w/ chicken or turkey breast?

Meghan said...

Substitution question: Sometimes a recipe calls for buttermilk. I hate buying a whole thing of buttermilk for the 1 or 2 Tablespoons a recipe calls for. Is there a substitution for this??

joannE. said...

Thanks for checking out the recipe Meghan! The spinach and cheesy polenta would be great side dishes for any entree. If duck isn't your thing I'd recommend substituting if for another red meat or dark meat. Because of the richness and acidity level of the pan sauce it is more complimentary to heartier (and fattier) pieces of meat.

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