Fraser Valley Duck Breast Taster
- Serves: 4 taster size
- Active Time: 1 hr 30 mins
- Total Time: 4 hrs
- Views: 35,557
- Success Rating: 96% (?)
Step 1: Making the Duck Short Stock• 2 1/2 lb duck bones (from one whole duck)
• 1 tbsp olive oil
• 1 whole carrot
• 1 whole onion
• 1 whole apple
• 1 stalk celery
• 1/2 leek
• 1 tbsp olive oil
• 1 cup white wine
• 4 cups chicken stock
• 2 sprigs fresh thyme
• 1 cup demi-glace
To start the short stock, use the bones from a whole duck. Make sure the bones are cut into approximately 2" -inch pieces.
Heat a pot over medium-high heat and add the oil. Add the bones and cook until evenly caramelized and golden all over, about 20 to 30 minutes. Duck is very fatty so as the fat melts, strain the grease from the pan so the bones caramelize properly.
While the bones cook, prepare the mirepoix. Cut the celery, carrot, leek, onion and apple into approximately 2" -inch pieces.
Once the bones have caramelized, remove and set aside. Add the remaining oil and sauté the vegetables for approximately 20 to 30 minutes, until they start to and caramelize. Once done, deglaze with the white wine and simmer until all of the liquid has reduced, about 3 or 4 minutes. Next, add the chicken stock, thyme, demi-glace and the duck bones. Bring this to a quick boil and then turn the heat down to low. Let simmer for about 1 1/2 hours.
Once the stock has reduced and turned a rich, dark color, it is ready to be strained through a fine mesh sieve. Place the stock into a pot and reduce by about half over medium-low heat or until the sauce has a thicker, sauce-like consistency. This should take about 20 to 30 minutes.
Once ready, check the sauce for seasoning and then set it aside while you prepare the squash.
Step 2: Preparing and Cooking the Squash• 1/2 kabocha or butternut squash
• 1/2 onion
• 1 tbsp unsalted butter
• 1/8 tsp kosher salt
• 1 pinch white pepper
• 1/2 to 3/4 cup chicken stock
Peel and cut the squash in half. Remove the seeds and cut into approximately 1" -inch pieces. Because this is a taster menu and the portions are half of the squash is more than enough for 4 people.
Next, finely dice the onion. Over medium-low heat, melt the butter and cook the onions until translucent. Add the squash, salt, pepper and cook for a minute or two. Add just enough chicken stock to cover the squash. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat. Simmer on low until tender. When a knife slides into the squash easily, it is ready to be puréed.
Place the squash into a food processor and pulse until smooth. Set aside while you prepare the duck. To reheat the squash, either microwave for 1 to 2 minutes on high or reheat in a small sauce pan over low heat.
Step 3: Preparing and Cooking the Duck• 2 duck breasts (2 singles)
• 1/4 tsp kosher salt
• 1/8 tsp white pepper
• 1 whole shallot
• 1/2 cup Saskatoon berries (can substitute with Huckleberries or Wild Blueberries)
• 1/2 cup port wine
• 1 cup duck stock (from Step 1)
• fleur de sel (for garnish)
To start the duck, preheat the oven to 350° degrees Fahrenheit.
Score the fat of the duck breasts and season both sides with salt and pepper.
Next, heat an oven proof fry pan to medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot, add the duck, fat side down. Let cook for about 5 to 7 minutes. For the best results, pour off any excess fat as the duck cooks. Once the fat becomes crispy and the sides of the duck start to cook, place into the oven for another 5 to 7 minutes to cook. This time will depend on the size of the duck breasts. When cooking duck, it is best if cooked no more than medium rare. Once ready, allow the duck to sit for a minute before loosely covering with foil. Set aside to rest. While the duck rests, you can prepare the Saskatoon berry Jus and reheat the squash purée.
For the jus (or sauce), finely mince the shallot. Add a bit more oil to the pot, if needed, and cook the shallot over medium heat for about a minute. Deglaze the pan with the port and add the Saskatoon berries. Let this reduce by about half. Once reduced, add about a cup of duck stock and stir. Simmer for 2 to 3 minutes until the sauce is nice and thick. Any leftover stock can be frozen and used another time.
To plate the duck, first reheat the squash and make sure your sauce is nice and hot. Slice each duck breast into 4 pieces, lengthwise. Smear the squash purée onto the plate and place two pieces of duck per plate. Drizzle with a bit of the sauce and finish with a pinch of fleur de sel. Serve immediately.
- by Dino Renaerts
- July 5, 2007
By increasing the portion size this taster menu can easily be a delicious full course meal.