Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Duck Breast with White Bean Puree, Blackberry Sauce and Endive Salad


(Original recipes by Gabe all, so expect plenty of dashes, splashes, and handfuls of ingredients. ;-p)

1 duck breast (Mine was already marinated, but I wish it wasn't. I would have dry rubbed it w/ something delicious.)
1 tbsp. minced rosemary

1/3 cup no-crust 1/4 inch bread cubes tossed in dashes of cinnamon, allspice, salt and pepper
1/2 tbsp. bacon fat or butter

1 14 oz. can of white beans, rinsed
Pinch of chili powder
Pinch of cinnamon
Pinch of allspice
1 heaping tablespoon of tahini
Several tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
Zest of 1 Meyer lemon

1/2 pint container of blackberries (pureed and strained through fine mesh strainer)
1/2 tsp. chili powder
Dash of cumin
Juice of 1 Meyer lemon
Dash of balsamic vinegar

2 Belgian endives
1 small shallot
Handful of arugula
1 Bosc pear
1/4 c. pine nuts, toasted

Juice of 1 Meyer lemon
A splash or two of balsamic vinegar
A drizzle of agave or honey
A tablespoon or 2 of extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper

1) Toast pine nuts until golden in a dry pan. Set aside for salad.
2) Toss the bread cubes w/ spices and place in a skillet on med. with butter or bacon fat (if you're the type of person to have bacon fat laying around) and brown, tossing occasionally. Reserve for duck.
3) Thinly slice endive and shallot and combine w/ arugula. Mix together the ingredients for the dressing. Reserve both separately until right before serving.
4) Cut and core pears. Slice into wedges, then place in pan with a bit of butter or oil and cook for 5 minutes on med-high heat until they start to turn golden. Right before you remove them from the pan, pour in a tablespoon or two of balsamic. It will absorb into, and add color to, the pears. Set the pears aside on the plates to be topped w/ dressed greens right before serving.
5) Pulse the blackberries in a food processor until smooth, press through a fine mesh strainer and mix juice w/ remaining ingredients. Reserve to drizzle on the duck plate.
6) Put rinsed beans, spices, and tahini in food processor, and start blending. Slowly drizzle in oil until completely combined and smooth, scraping down side if necessary.
7) Put the beans and lemon zest in a small pot, but wait to heat until the duck is resting after it has been cooked.
8) Place duck breast skin side down in pan on med-high heat. cook 10 minutes. Flip and cook on the opposite side about 8 minutes or until a thermometer reads 135-140. Tent w/ foil and set aside to rest about 5 or 10 minutes.
9) Heat beans. Toss salad w/ dressing and plate everything. Slice duck across the grain, place atop the beans, and sprinkle with minced rosemary.
10) Open the bottle (or 8) of Jolly Pumpkin/Nogne-O/Stone Special Holiday Ale.
11) Enjoy together.

Dear God, this was a good pairing. This holiday collaboration is brewed with a 25% rye malt, white sage, juniper, and chestnuts, with very well-balanced pie spices and piney hop tones, so it went fabulously with the duck and rosemary white bean puree. A pairing worth remembering, and also a fine addition to our holiday beer lineup--not over-spiced, very balanced and full, bitter and sweet without ever getting syrupy, and as one blogger on beeradvocate.com put it, "packs enough of a punch to make some serious sea donkeys look like catches." Well, God bless us, and especially--at this festive and welcoming season of the year--the sea donkeys. God bless us, every one.

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