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Duck Breast with Currants and Foie Gras-Maitake Bread Pudding Recipe


Duck Breast with Foie Gras Bread Pudding

A decadent dish served by chef Anita Lo at a dinner during the 2011 St. Croix Food & Wine Experience

Click here to see Chefs' Favorite Winter Recipes.


For the bread pudding:

  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 quart stale plain French baguettes, bottom crusts removed and diced (not sourdough)
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 2 cups maitake mushrooms, cleaned
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 4 ounces foie gras mousse, roughly cubed
  • 2 cups chicken stock (more or less, depending on dryness of the bread)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
  • ½ tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

For the duck:

  • 4 boneless duck breasts, skin on
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3 tablespoons dried currants (or any dried red fruit such as prunes or cranberries)
  • ¼ cup port
  • 1 bunch spinach, washed
  • 1 tablespoon butter


For the bread pudding:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a small sauté pan, sweat the onion in ½ the butter on medium-low heat, stirring until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add to a bowl with the cubed bread. Heat a pan on high. Add the oil, and when just smoking, add the mushrooms followed by the remaining butter, then season with salt and pepper. Sauté until crisp and cooked through. Add this to the bowl as well. Add remaining ingredients and stir, allowing bread to soak up the chicken stock. The bread should be quite wet, but no stock should pool at the bottom — you may need to let the mixture sit a bit, then stir again so that the bread soaks up the liquid. Add more stock as necessary. Taste and adjust seasonings. Place in 4-ounce ramekins and bake at 400 degrees until golden brown and crispy on the top, about 30-35 minutes.

For the duck:

In the meantime, heat a sauté pan on high. Season the duck breasts both sides with salt and pepper and place in the dry pan skin side down. Turn heat immediately to lowest setting. As the fat accumulates, pour it off. Continue until the skin is deep brown and rendered off most of its fat. Turn over, raise heat to high, and finish to desired temperature. Remove to a warm plate.  Add the currants and port to the same sauté pan and bring to a boil. Reduce until most of the liquid is cooked off and is slightly syrupy. Add any accumulated juices from the duck.

Cook the spinach with the butter and season with salt. Drain and serve with the bread puddings, the duck, and the currant sauce.