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L'Escalier Five Spice-
Seared Foie Gras
Makes 6 Servings
* FOR THE ORANGE JUS: (Makes 2 Quarts)
*3 chicken carcasses, breast and leg meat removed
*6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
*5 large Spanish onions, peeled and large dice
*1 head celery, large dice
*1 bunch fresh thyme
*1 bunch fresh rosemary
*2 fresh bay leaves
*2 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
*3 quarts chicken stock
*5 oranges, juiced and zested
*2 tablespoons dried arrowroot
*Water (sufficient for slurry)
*5 tablespoons whole coriander seed
*4 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
*4 tablespoons whole cumin seed
*2 cinnamon sticks
*2 star anise
*1 cup heavy cream
*4 egg yolks
*1 vanilla bean
*2 ounces Grand Marnier
*6 slices brioche, 1-inch thick and trimmed into rounds
*2 tablespoons butter
*12 ounces Orange Jus (see recipe)
*1/2 pound butter, divided
*2 parsnips, peeled and small dice
*3 ripe bananas, peeled and diced
*1 lobe Grade A foie gras, cut into 6 portions and deveined
*2 ounces Chinese Five-Spice (see recipe)
*3 ounces pomegranate glaze (available at gourmet markets and specialty food shops)
*Salt and pepper, to taste
*Coarse sea salt, garnish
1To prepare the Orange Jus, cut the bones and carcass of the chicken into 2-inch pieces. In a stockpot, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil to smoke point. Add 1/3 of chicken bones, allowing to brown on all sides. Remove the browned bones and repeat the process, browning the bones in three batches. Remove bones and set aside.
2In the same stockpot, add 4 tablespoons fresh olive oil and the diced onions. Over high heat, saute the onions until they begin to brown and become tender. Reduce heat slightly and continue cooking until onions are well caramelized, about 15 minutes. Add the celery and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add the thyme, rosemary, bay leaves and peppercorns. Add the browned chicken bones back into the stockpot. Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for approximately 1 hour or until the liquid has been reduced by one-third.
3Strain the liquid through a fine sieve into a clean pot. Return the liquid to a simmer. Skim any remaining fat from the surface of the liquid. Add the orange juice and zest to the simmering liquid. Simmer for an additional 10 minutes. In a small bowl, mix together the dried arrowroot and sufficient water to form a thick paste. Drizzle small amounts of the arrowroot slurry into the simmering liquid and allow to thicken (the entire arrowroot slurry may not be needed). Once the sauce has thickened enough to lightly coat the back of a spoon, strain it through a fine sieve and set aside.
4To prepare the Chinese Five-Spice, in a small, dry saute pan, toast the coriander, black peppercorns and cumin seed over medium heat. Continue to toast until the spices become aromatic and the cumin seed begins to brown slightly. Place all of the spices into a coffee grinder and grind into a fine powder. Store in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for no longer than a month.
5To prepare the Brioche, in a bowl, whisk together the heavy cream and egg yolks. Split the vanilla bean and scrape the seeds from the pod with the blade of a knife. Place the beans into the cream and egg mixture. Continue whisking and add the Grand Marnier.
6Preheat a saute pan to medium heat. Dredge the brioche rounds in the cream. Place 2 tablespoons butter in the preheated pan and add brioche to the melted butter. Brown the brioche on both sides, approximately 1 minute per side. Remove the toasted brioche from the pan and reserve in a warm place for service.
7To prepare the foie gras, in a small saucepot, heat the 12 ounces Orange Jus to a light simmer. Season with salt and pepper and remove from heat. Whisk in 6 tablespoons butter and strain through a fine sieve. Reserve.
8In a small saute pan, melt 2 tablespoons butter. Add the diced parsnip and roast in the butter 3-4 minutes or until the parsnip is caramelized and tender. Add the diced banana and saute until the bottom surface of the banana begins to caramelize. The banana will begin to break down and become mushy. Stir the banana frequently. Once the banana mixture is evenly caramelized and has achieved a soft paste, remove from the pan and hold warm for later use.
9Season the six portions of foie gras with salt. Coat the outside of the foie gras with the 2 ounces of Five-Spice mixture. Place the seasoned foie gras into a heavy-bottomed saute pan. Place the pan on high heat and allow the foie gras to come up to temperature with the pan. Once the pan has reached searing heat, the foie gras should have released a good amount of fat and be well caramelized on one side. Flip the foie gras in the pan and place the entire pan into a 400F-degree oven for 3 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven. With a slotted spatula, remove the foie gras from the pan and set aside.
10To present, place a slice of the toasted brioche in the center of a plate. Drizzle a line of pomegranate glaze around the perimeter of the plate. Ladle the Orange Jus in the space between the brioche and pomegranate glaze. Place a pile of roasted banana and parsnip on top of brioche. Top with seared foie gras.
11Garnish with a sprinkling of coarse sea salt and a small salad of micro herbs, if available.
Chef Kevin Ives, L'Escalier at The Breakers, Palm Beach, FL