Duck Liver Cheesecake with Red Currant Sauce

Student Finalist 2014, Erica Anderson, Houston Community College, Houston, TX

Serving Size {8-10 Servings}

Ingredients


Crust:
6 Tbsp Butter, melted, divided
1 Clove Garlic, minced
1/2 tsp each: Rosemary, Thyme and Parsley, minced
1 cup Panko Breadcrumbs
1/3 cup Parmesan Cheese


Filling:
1 Maple Leaf Farms Boneless Duck Breast
Smoked Salt, to taste
Fresh Cracked Black Pepper, to taste
6 Duck Livers, washed, deveined*
Rendered Duck Fat (from breast)**
2 Shallots, minced
2-3 Cloves of Garlic, minced
1/2 tsp each: Thyme, Parsley and Tarragon, finely minced
Salt and White Pepper, to taste
1/4 cup of Brandy
24 oz Cream Cheese, softened
1-1/2 cups Sour Cream
3 Eggs
1/3 cup Heavy Cream


Red Currant Sauce:
1 Tbsp Olive Oil 2 Shallots, minced
1 Clove Garlic, minced
Fresh Thyme, minced, to taste
5 Cherry Tomatoes, peeled and halved
2 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
1/4 cup Red Wine
1 oz Butter
2-3 oz Red Currants
1 Tbsp Honey
1-2 oz Heavy Cream


Fresh Herbs or Microgreens for garnish


*Note: Place livers in a bowl and add milk to cover. Cover bowl and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
**Use duck fat rendered from duck breast for livers.

Directions

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Crust:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a small saut? pan, melt 2 tablespoons of butter. Saut? garlic and herbs until fragrant. Add breadcrumbs and saut? until browned. Remove from heat and add cheese. Press the mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Set aside.


Filling:
Score the skin of the duck breast in a diagonal direction (do not cut through the duck). Turn the duck breast around and score the breast diagonally in the opposite direction. Season duck breast with smoked salt and black pepper. Heat a skillet over high heat. Place the duck breast, skin side down, into hot skillet. Cook duck breast for 3 minutes on each side. Take the duck breast off of the heat and allow it to rest on a cutting board, skin side up. Save rendered duck fat to saut? livers.

Drain livers and pat dry. In a large skillet, heat the duck fat (from the seared breast). Add the livers and cook for 3-4 minutes. Add the shallots, garlic, herbs, salt and pepper and cook until shallots are soft and livers are slightly pink. Add the brandy and cook until liquid has evaporated. Remove from heat and allow livers to cool.

Once cool, place liver mixture and pan drippings into a blender (or food processor) and process until smooth. Add cream cheese and sour cream. Add eggs to mixture, processing mixture until smooth after each one. If mixture is thick, add heavy cream to thin. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Slice duck breast into 1/8 inch slices and arrange over prepared crust. Pour cream cheese mixture over duck breast. Bake for 40-50 minutes or until center is set, but still jiggles a little. Move to wire rack to cool, about an hour. While cooling, make red currant sauce.


Sauce:
Saut? shallots, garlic, thyme and tomatoes in 1 tablespoon olive oil for 1-2 minutes. Deglaze the pan with the balsamic vinegar and red wine. Add butter, currants, and honey and reduce for about a minute or so. Add heavy cream to taste.

When cheesecake is cool, remove outer ring of pan. Loosen from bottom of pan with a butter knife and transfer to serving plate. Decorate with fresh herbs, microgreens and spoon red currant sauce over top of cheesecake slice.





2014 Chef Recipe Contest


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