Artwork by Jacob

Artwork by Jacob

Thursday, March 5, 2015

French Fridays with Dorie

While the rest of French Fridays with Dorie are making cabbage and foie gras bundles (page 193), we made duck breasts.  Twenty-minute honey-glazed duck breasts (page 229).  My husband is becoming an expert at rendering duck fat and I am becoming a fan of duck.  I am also looking for suggestions on how to cook some potatoes in the duck fat I saved.  I have about 2 tablespoons of fat. Suggestions much appreciated.

The duck breasts are cooked over medium high heat in a dutch oven to render the fat and make it crispy.  Then finished off in the oven, 250 degrees.  The sauce is balsamic vinegar, honey and the juice of a lemon.  The recipe calls for a lime but I forgot to buy one but it tasted good with the lemon.
I served the duck with Dorie's suggestion of broth-braised potatoes (page 358).  Fingerling potatoes were cooked in chicken broth with a tablespoon of olive oil, garlic, a strip of lemon zest, bay leaf and thyme.
The end result was a fancy meal for a Monday night.  Our meals have definitely gone up-scale since cooking with Dorie.  The duck was perfect and we really enjoyed the sauce.  The potatoes surprisingly lacked the flavor from all that it was cooked with.  Dorie suggests serving the concentrated liquid over the potatoes but I did not want 2 sauces competing on my plate.  And to round out our meal I made sauteed spinach with a squeeze of lemon.
I also managed to make from Everyday Dorie from the Washington post, curried chicken parmentier. We loved this dish and found it to be very flavorful.  The chicken curry is topped with sweet potatoes and I needed an excuse to make sweet potatoes.

These recipes are part of an international cooking group working our way through Around My French Table by Dorie Greenspan. 

16 comments:

  1. Your duck breasts look amazing - yum.

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  2. Your duck breast look great. I agree with you on the potatoes they did not taste any better with all that was cooked with them. This is a very fancy dinner. With this meal I also had the orange salad and olives it was very good.

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  3. Bill loved every one of Dorie's duck recipes! And her technique is perfect! What a lovely meal!!!

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  4. Bill loved every one of Dorie's duck recipes! And her technique is perfect! What a lovely meal!!!

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  5. That duck was fab, wasn't it? And the chicken parmentier? I've made 2 since that recipe appeared!!

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  6. I had not prepared duck at home before joining this group and learned that my family really loved it. We don't have it too often but when we do Dorie's recipes are spot on and it is a special treat. Or a fancy Monday meal, as you said :) Kudos for trying on the the WPost recipes- so much to cook, so little time - LOL !!

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  7. I found two duck breasts in the freezer and made the same recipe on Sunday. I
    loved the sauce with the balsamic, really delicious. Great post, you were able to make up a recipe, something I am trying to do. Have a great weekend.

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  8. I love duck too.. weird about the potatoes not picking up the flavors. I used have a great roasted chicken recipe that you cover the bird in duck fat. Duck fat is a great cooking ingredient.

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  9. Great make-up! Your dinner looks so good, it makes me want to revisit those recipes.

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  10. Some of my favorite recipes from AMFT are those made with duck. Have you made the duck breasts with peaches yet? So delicious. I cannot figure out why your potatoes didn't have the rich flavoring of the duck fat. The spinach with lemon will be a stable in your repertoire, I'm betting. I had some fresh spinach in my fridge and made it also this week. Just love it.

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  11. We've loved the duck recipes and my husband has also become the duck cooker in our house, he's just so good at it. I've never made the official goose fat potatoes before, but I have eaten them and they are insanely delicious. The reason I've never made them is that, from what I've read, they require quite a bit more fat and a VERY hot oven. I would suggest googling Nigella Lawson's recipe.

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  12. Yes, this book has made me a fan of duck at home.
    Re; The potatoes - take about 12 oz of baby potatoes (you want small ones) and toss them with a tablespoon of olive oil and some salt an pepper. Poke them in a couple places with a fork. Place them in a covered (lightly covered) microwave safe dish and microwave on high for about 5-7 minutes - until the potatoes are softened (they need to be "squishable). Drain the potatoes well. Heat the duck fat in a heavy skillet. Place the potatoes in the skillet once the fat and skillet are hot. Use a sturdy spatula to press down on the potato. Cook for a few minutes on each side until the potato skin is crispy. Salt and pepper to taste...

    Whew - long comment :-)

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  13. Until FFWD, I only ordered duck breasts in restaurants. Now I make them at home (and do still order at restaurants, but mine is equally good).
    For cooking potatoes in duck fat, here's my method, similar, but different than Cher's:
    Preheat baking sheet in oven @ 425F. Cut 1 lb small unpeeled potatoes in half (or larger ones to the size they would be if small and halved). Place 2 Tbsp duck fat, potatoes, 3 sprigs rosemary, 6 sprigs thyme, and 2 cloves garlic, sliced thin, in the pan and toss to coat with fat. Bake 25-30 minutes. Stir once or twice so it doesn’t brown too much.
    I made the chicken parmentier too. Delicious! Howard didn't love the curry, so I can't wait to play with other seasonings.

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  14. I think I made this one with pork. I haven't made any of the duck recipes using duck. Gary's not a big fan but I should try it once at home. I have used duck fat for potatoes and I just roast them using duck fat instead of olive oil. They get crispy and are really, really good!

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  15. Oooh, that everyday dorie dish looks wonderful! I'll have to try it after reading this! Diane, I totally love that duck recipe that you made. It is so upscale, or at least it feels like it is. You got a great make up done this week!

    For duck fat potatoes, I also just roast them with the duck fat (sometimes melt it in the microwave first) and then season them with s&p or whatever fun seasoning you like. So good and nice and crispy!

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  16. What a lovely Monday night meal! I'm so happy that Dorie has introduced me to cooking duck. I had never tried before, but it isn't nearly as scary as I imagined.

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