Adam Stokes’ Duck Breast With Rhubarb Purée And Walnut Granola


This sublime duck dish can be dished up in under an hour and looks impressive on the plate. Chef Adam Stokes combines tart rhubarb, poached in a sweet liquor of vanilla and star anise, with a crunchy, savoury granola to provide a dish bursting with texture.

For the Gressingham duck:
2 duck breasts, 125g each

For the rhubarb purée:
100g of rhubarb
2 star anise
1 vanilla pod, split and seeds reserved
10g of caster sugar

For the savoury granola:
200g of almonds
100g of pine nuts
1 tsp coriander seeds
2 garlic cloves
2 tbsp of walnut oil
1 lemon, zest only
1 pinch of salt
1 dash of milk
vegetable oil, for deep frying

For the autumn soy vegetables:
12 baby leeks
8 baby turnips
2 heads Belgian endive, red, 12 leaves only
1 pinch of sugar
1 dash of soy sauce
2 2/3 handfuls of micro coriander shoots
olive oil

1 For the purée, wash and roughly chop the rhubarb and combine with the sugar, star anise and vanilla in a small pan.
Add enough water to cover and place over a medium heat. Bring to a simmer and cook until the rhubarb is tender. This should take around 10-15 minutes.
Strain the rhubarb, remove the star anise and reserve the liquid. Add the rhubarb to the blender and blitz until smooth – you may need some of the reserved liquid to achieve the right consistency. Pass the purée through a fine strainer and set aside to cool.
For the granola, toast the almonds and pine nuts in the oven at 180˚C/gas mark 4 until golden but not too brown. Toast the coriander seeds in a pan over a medium heat for 3-4 minutes – move them around a few times as they toast. Remove from the pan and crush with a mortar and pestle.
For the garlic crisps, peel and thinly slice (preferably using a mandolin) 2 cloves of garlic. Place the garlic slices into a small pan and cover in cold milk. Bring the milk up to 70˚C, strain off the milk and set aside the slices on a paper towel to dry.
Set the deep fryer to 160˚C and deep fry the slices at 160˚C for 5 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oil and drain on kitchen towel
Once cooled, crumble the crisps into a breadcrumb like consistency. Combine with the rest of the granola ingredients and season with the walnut oil, salt and lemon zest. Store in a warm, dry place until required.
For the duck, place a frying pan over a medium heat and add oil. Season the duck breast and place, skin-side down, into the pan. Cook until nicely browned, approximately 7-8 minutes
Tip the breast over and remove the pan from the heat. The residual heat of the pan will finish cooking the breast to medium rare. Allow to rest in a warm place.
10 Meanwhile, clean and slice the baby turnips into three vertical pieces, leaving the stalk attached to each piece for presentation. Pan-fry in a little olive oil until lightly golden and season with salt. Blanch the baby leeks, remove and pat-dry with kitchen towel.
11 Lightly sprinkle the sugar and salt over the red endive leaves and using a blowtorch, lightly caramelise all over – alternatively, you can place under a grill. Remove the duck breast from the pan and discard 3/4 of the fat.
12 Place a frying pan over a medium/high heat and add olive oil. Once the pan is hot, add the baby leeks and sauté for 2 minutes before adding a generous splash of soy sauce. Toss the leeks in the soy until nicely until evenly glazed.
13 Return the pan containing the duck back to a high heat, cook for a minute to crisp up the skin. Remove from the heat and keep the duck warm.
14 To serve, slice the duck breast and place on top of the granola and small dollops of the rhubarb purée. Finish by arranging the leeks, radish, turnips and chicory on or around the duck. Garnish with some micro coriander and serve immediately.

Recipe courtesy of Adam Stokes for Great British Chefs. See here for more. 

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