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Roasted Duck with Pickled Figs

Roasted Duck with Pickled Figs

Recipe by Michael Meredith

Roasted Duck with Pickled Figs

Serves 4

4 cups water
1 bay leaf
1 cup Moretti quick cook polenta
50g butter
30g Parmigiano Reggiano , grated
Rosemary to garnish, chopped
Chives to garnish, chopped
Sea salt  to taste

Pickled figs:
100ml Forvm Chardonnay vinegar
50ml water
1 bay leaf
½ tsp Spice Trader black peppercorns
½ tsp Spice Trader juniper berries
1 shallot, finely sliced
285g jar Can Bech preserved figs , halved (including syrup)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil  (EVO)

Duck breasts:
4 Gameford Lodge duck breasts
Sea salt
200g shiitake mushrooms, thickly sliced
100g wood ear or oyster mushrooms, thickly sliced
100ml Sabato chicken stock
1Tbsp Zany Zeus mascarpone
Micro watercress to garnish


Heat water and bay leaf in a small pot until boiling. Slowly whisk in the polenta. Continue to whisk over a high heat until the polenta begins to thicken. Turn down heat to low and cook for 8 minutes until smooth and thickened. Whisk in butter and Parmigiano. Season to taste and finish with rosemary and chives.

Pickled figs:

Heat vinegar, water, bay leaf, peppercorns and juniper berries in a small pot until just boiling then remove to one side. Place shallots, figs and syrup in a small bowl and strain the hot liquid over. Stir in EVO. Set aside to infuse for 1 hour.

Duck breasts:

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Score the duck skin and season with salt. Place duck skin-side down in an ovenproof pan. Heat slowly for 5-6 minutes to render off the fat. Drain and reserve most of the fat. Turn the duck breast over to sear for 1 minute before placing pan in the oven for 7-8 minutes. Remove and rest for 5 minutes before slicing.

Sauté shiitake mushrooms in the pan with reserved duck fat for 4 minutes. Add wood ear mushrooms and cook for 1-2 minutes before deglazing the pan with stock. Simmer until reduced and shiny. Stir in the mascarpone and remove from the heat.

To serve:
Spoon the polenta in the middle of a bowl. Slice the duck and arrange on top. Spoon the mushrooms around and on top with the pickled figs. Garnish with watercress and serve.


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