Thursday, October 25, 2012


yields 2-4 servings

2 duck breasts
4-6 salsify (if unavailable, use parsnips)
1 lemon
8 Brussels sprouts
2 slices thick-cut bacon (house cured preferably)
1 cup duck or chicken stock (home-made if possible)
1/2 cup red wine (merlot works well)
1/2 cup sherry vinegar
5 ounces butter (divided into: 2 ounces, 2 ounces, 1 ounce)
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup semolina flour
1/2 cup water (plus 1 gallon for boiling)
2 eggs
Kosher salt
Black pepper
1 bunch fresh thyme
1 bunch flat-leaf Italian parsley

Bring 1 gallon of water to boil in a pot, preheat an oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

Chop 1 tablespoon of parsley and 1 teaspoon of fresh thyme. Boil 1/2 cup of water in a sauce pot with fresh herbs, add a pinch of salt, 2 ounces of butter and wait for it to melt. Add flours and cook for 2 minutes, transfer to a kitchen aid mixer with paddle attachment. Mix for 1 minute, add eggs, mix 1 more minute until smooth. Transfer batter to a pastry bag and pipe long lines onto a sheet pan dusted with flour. Cut gnocchi into 1 inch pieces. Cook in boiling water for 2-3 minutes until doubled in size. Drain, cool under cold water and reserve.

Score diagonally across the breasts (hatch marks) making sure not to penetrate into the meat, only the skin and season breasts with salt and pepper and place skin side down in a oven safe skillet. Render fat and crisp skin over med-low heat, about 10-15 minutes. Remove fat from the pan twice during this process. Reserve. Throw in 5 sprigs of fresh thyme and place in the oven to finish cooking (about 4 minutes for medium temp, and 10 minutes for well done). Remove from the oven and flip breasts over to briefly cook the other side, about 1 minute. Remove and let duck rest for 10 minutes.

Cut bacon in to cubes and render in a skillet until browned. Remove and save for garnish.

Peel salsify and place in water with the squeezed lemon until ready to cut. Thinly slice the salsify on a mandolin and sauté pan with reserved duck fat until cooked, but still crisp, remove and reserve.

Blanch Brussels sprouts in boiling water for 3 minutes. Remove and shock in ice water. Peel outer leaves and reserve, discard the centers.

Reduce red wine and sherry vinegar in a sauce pot until glossy, add duck stock reduce again until slightly thickened, add butter last minute, season with salt, reserve.

Heat a sauté pan over med-high heat and add 1 ounce of butter. Sauté gnocchi until browned on all sides. Add salsify and Brussels in the sauté pan with a splash of chicken stock, season and reduce until no liquid remains. Slice duck breast into 1/4 inch pieces and plate with vegetables and gnocchi. Pour sauce around.

bacon recipe courtesy of: Joel Gargano, Rocco's Dinner Party, Season 1, Episode 2 (Signature Dish, Winner), Bravo TV

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