Pascal Aussignac's rich and comforting duck and mushroom recipe makes an impressive dinner party dish. It is not a pie in the traditional sense, but a delicious duck farce - almost like a creamy, baked sausage meat. Crispy duck crackling adds wonderful texture.
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First, remove the skin from the duck breast and reserve for the crackling. Check for sinew in the flesh and remove. Chop the flesh roughly and place in a food processor with the egg whites and a teaspoon of salt and pepper
2 duck Magrets, large (about 400g in total)
2 egg whites, free range
sea salt, fine
Blitz on full speed for approximately 3 minutes, stopping the machine twice to scrape down the sides. For a velvety-smooth texture, rub the mix through a drum sieve after blending to remove any excess sinew
Scrape the mixture into a large bowl and use a strong whisk to mix in the double cream. Store in the fridge while you make the duck crackling
250ml of double cream, chilled
Cut the reserved duck skin into small diamonds approximately 2-3cm in size. Rub with rock salt and set aside for 30 minutes, then rinse and pat dry
Place in a shallow saucepan, cover with sunflower oil and heat gently on the stove for approximately 2 hours, but do not allow to deep fry. Drain, pat well with paper towel and place on a lined tray in a preheated oven set to 150°C/gas mark 2) until crisp. Sprinkle with fine salt before serving
For the mushroom sauce, if you are using chanterelles, wash in tepid water then pat dry. Sauté in 20g of butter over a medium-high heat for approximately 3 minutes until softened, then season lightly
100g of chanterelles, or brown chestnut mushrooms, finely chopped
sea salt, fine
20g of butter, plus extra, melted
Drain the cooking juices into a cup and tip the mushrooms onto a plate. Return the juices to the pan and add the cream. Bring to the boil and cook for a minute or so until reduced by half, then return the mushrooms to the pan. Stir to coat and remove from the heat, tip out onto a plate and leave to cool
50ml of double cream
Preheat the steam oven to 190°C and set to 50% steam/50% dry
Remove the duck mixture from the fridge, divide into 4 egg-shaped (or small dariole) moulds and cover with cling film. Place in the oven for 10 minutes
Once cooked, remove from the moulds, pat dry and roll in the breadcrumbs. Place the 'pies' on individual plates and serve with the warm mushroom sauce and a sprinkling of the duck crackling
50g of Panko breadcrumbs, lightly toasted
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