This dish is all about the balance of sweet and sour. From different flavors and textures, this is not your typical duck dish. Watch Gabe break down the ingredients you’ll need for this dish on Rosh Chodesh Club!
Prepare an eight-by-eight-inch Pyrex or baking pan, by spraying it with nonstick spray. Pour the water and one teaspoon of salt into a medium-size pot and bring to a boil. While whisking, slowly pour the polenta in to the water and cook until thick, around five to eight minutes. Take off the stove and stir in the margarine and olive oil. Pour into the prepared pan and cover with a sheet of Gefen Parchment. Place another pan on top with a weight to weigh it down, if possible; this will give the polenta cake an even top. Place in the fridge for around one hour to set.
Place the chestnuts on a pan and roast in a 350-degree-Fahrenheit oven for eight to 10 minutes until toasted. Once done, set aside for later.
Score the skin side of the duck, making sure not to cut into the flesh. Season with salt and pepper and place, skin side down in a dry room temperature pan. Sprinkle the back of the duck with the quatre épices. Place the pan over a medium flame. Using a burger press or foil wrapped can, press down the duck; this will ensure an evenly crisp skin. Let the duck slowly cook and render its fat. After about six to eight minutes, check the duck to see if the skin has gotten crisp and golden brown. Flip the duck and continue cooking the breast until it has come to your desired temperature – 140 degrees Fahrenheit for perfect medium rare duck, 150 degrees Fahrenheit for medium, and 165 degrees Fahrenheit for well done. Take the duck out of the pan and place in a warm spot to temp while the rest of the dish is completed. Pour out half of the rendered duck fat and save for later.
Take the set polenta out of the fridge and cut into three-by-three-inch squares. Place the same pan back on the stove over a medium high flame. Fry the cakes on both sides until golden. Place on a paper towel to absorb the excess oil and save for later.
Cut the radicchio into wedges, keeping the core intact. Quarter the figs and julienne the shallots if not already done. Cut the broccoli leaves and stems into ribbons. Place in the same pan, adding the reserved duck fat, over a medium high flame and bring to a simmer. Sauté the shallots for one to two minutes, then add the radicchio and cook for another three minutes. Next, add the figs and continue to cook for another two minutes. Lastly add the broccoli and cook for one more minute. Deglaze with a quarter cup of balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and sauté for another minute, then remove from the stove and set aside.
Slice the warm duck into quarter-inch slices and chop the chestnuts.
To plate, spoon some of the fig radicchio sauté onto a plate. Place a fried polenta cake on top and arrange three slices of duck over it. Sprinkle the duck with some of the quatre épices mixture. Garnish with a drizzle of the balsamic reduction, some fresh parsley and tarragon leaves, and the chopped chestnuts.
Ask your LOR or follow these guidelines to check fresh figs for insects: Slice open a handful and check inside. If no insects are found, the rest may be eaten without checking.
Raddichio and broccoli leaves can be cleaned in a similar fashion to romaine lettuce: remove leaves from the base, soak in soapy water followed by rinsing in a strong stream of clean water, then visually inspect each leaf under direct light.