ROAST DUCK BREAST WITH SOFT POLENTA & RADICCHIO
Serves 4 (See photograph, page 79)
4 boneless duck breasts ¼ cup olive oil 2 teaspoons juniper berries* 1 teaspoon fennel seeds 1 stalk rosemary, sprigs removed 1 radicchio 2 sprigs thyme 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar** 1 teaspoon caster sugar 2 tablespoons vincotttto*** extra olive oil, to drizzle ⅓ cup roasted hazelnuts, chopped extra thyme leaves, to garnish extra vincotttto, to serve (optional)
1⅔ cups milk ⅓ cup white polenta**** 50g butttter, diced ½ cup grated parmesan
Trim excess fat from duck breasts. Combine olive oil, juniper berries, fennel seeds and rosemary sprigs in a large bowl. Season with sea salt flflakes and black pepper. Add duck breasts and turn to coat in oil mixture. Cover with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator for 1 hour to develop flflavours. To make soft polenta, place milk in a medium saucepan and bring to boil over a medium heat. Gradually add polenta in a thin, steady stream, whisking constantly until combined. Reduce heat to low. Cook, whisking constantly, for 10 minutes or until polenta is soft and mixture thickens. Remove from heat. Cover with a lid and stand for 10 minutes. Add butter and parmesan, and stir to combine. Season to taste. Cover to keep warm. Preheat oven to 180°C. Cut radicchio in half lengthways. Tear into large pieces and place in a baking dish with thyme sprigs. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil and sherry vinegar. Sprinkle with sugar, and season with sea salt and black pepper. Cover baking dish with foil and roast for 12 minutes or until radicchio is wilted. Meanwhile, heat a large ovenproof frying pan over a medium heat. Add duck breasts, skin-side down, and cook for 5 minutes or until skin is golden. Turn and cook for 2 minutes. Transfer pan to oven and roast for 8 minutes for medium or until cooked to your liking. Spoon polenta among serving plates. Slice duck breasts lengthways and place on polenta. Arrange radicchio on plates. Drizzle with vincotto and extra oil. Sprinkle with hazelnuts and garnish with extra thyme. Serve with extra vincotto on the side, if desired.
*Available at specialty spice shops, delicatessens and some supermarkets. **Available at delicatessens and gourmet food stores. Substitute red wine vinegar. ***Also known as vino cotto, this condiment is made by reducing grape must to a thick syrup. It’s available at gourmet food stores and delicatessens. ****Available at gourmet food stores and some delicatessens. Substitute regular polenta.