" American President, The" No Lame Duck

Are you ready for a filling and delicious, multiple-course meal? You'd better set some time aside for this massive recipe!

Ingredients

For the Crisp Peppered Duck:

  • 3 Long Island Ducks
  • 3/4 cups fresh cracked black pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon ancho chili powder


For the Kumquat and Pomegranate Sauce:
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 half ancho chili, seeds removed
  • 1-cup sweet rice vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cups citrus juice, orange and tangerine
  • 1-cup pomegranate juice
  • 1-cup kumquats, sliced paper thin
  • 1-cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1/2-teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


For the Sweet Potato and Ginger Flan:
  • 1 medium sweet potato
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons of grated ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter


For the Wheat Berry Pilaf with Winter Vegetables:
  • 1 cup medium diced fennel
  • 1 cup medium diced butternut squash
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 3/4 cup diced onion
  • 1 cup wheat berries
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 cups of vegetable stock
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup of orange juice
  • 1/2 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1/4 cup orange segments
  • Parsley leaves for garnish


For the Stir Fried Broccoli Rabe:
  • 2 bunches of broccoli rabe
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Zest from one lemon
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Directions:

For the Crisp Peppered Duck:
1. Wash and dry ducks. Pepper the ducks two days before you plan to serve them. Spread the cracked pepper on a cutting board and roll the ducks in the pepper until well coated. Place the ducks uncovered on wire racks and refrigerate for two days. This drying insures a crisp skin.

2. Roast the ducks early on the day you plan to serve them. Preheat oven to 350F. Place the garlic and salt in a bowl. Rub the mixture with your fingertips to extract the garlic oils and flavor. Rub until salt is moist and has picked up the garlic essence. Remove and discard the garlic pieces. Add the rosemary and chili powder and mix well rubbing with your fingertips until all ingredients are thoroughly blended. Sprinkle the inside cavity of the ducks with this mixture. Place the ducks on a rack in a large roasting pan. Roast for approximately one and a half hours or until the ducks are completely cooked. Remove from the oven and let cool.

3. Remove the breasts with the skin on, in one piece from each side of the ducks. Remove the legs. Cover and refrigerate the meat. Prepare Kumquat and Pomegranate Sauce (recipe follows).

4. When ready to serve, reheat the ducks in a 450 degree oven for 10 minutes. Place the under the broiler if necessary to crisp the skin. Reheat the Kumquat and Pomegranate sauce. To serve, slice the breast meat and arrange on serving plates with the legs. Surround with sauce.

5. Serving suggestions: Sweet Potato and Ginger Flan, Toasted Wheat Berry Pilaf with Winter Squash and Citrus, and Stir Fried Broccoli Rabe (recipes follow).


For the Kumquat and Pomegranate Sauce:
1. Place a 2-quart stainless steel saucepan over a medium heat and add the mustard seeds and chili. Toast in the pan for a minute, and then add the vinegar and juices; reduce by half, strain and cool.

2. Combine the kumquats and pomegranate seeds with the reduced liquid.


For the Sweet Potato and Ginger Flan:
1. Preheat oven to 350.

2. Bake the sweet potato until tender and peel when cool enough to handle. Process sweet potato through a food mill or food processor until smooth.

3. Blend the cream, eggs, grated ginger, and seasonings. Combine mixture with the pureed sweet potato and whisk until smooth.

4. Butter the desired dish or dishes. Fill the dish or dishes with the custard base, and place in a pan with hot water to come halfway up the sides of the dish. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until just set.


For the Wheat Berry Pilaf with Winter Vegetables:
1. Season the diced fennel and butternut squash with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast in a 350 degree oven until tender; about 20 minutes.

2. Combine the onion, wheat berries, thyme, and bay leaves. Then add this to the vegetable stock in a medium saucepan, and cook slowly over medium heat for approximately 2 hours adding more stock if need be. Cool and strain off any remaining liquid.

3. Once the wheat berries are cool, place them in a medium sauce pan along with the roasted squash and fennel. Add the orange juice and cranberries and gently warm the pilaf so as not to burst the cranberries.

4. Season to taste. Garnish with orange segments and parsley leaves.


For the Stir Fried Broccoli Rabe:
1. Blanch the broccoli rabe in boiling water until just tender, and shock in ice water to stop cooking and keep bright green color.

2. In a hot saute pan, add the butter, olive oil and garlic and slightly brown. Then add the broccoli rabe and saute to heat thoroughly. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Garnish with fresh lemon zest.



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