Nickel & Nickel Harris Vineyard Merlot

Pomegranate Molasses-Glazed Duck Breast
Shaved Fennel and Spicy Green Salad, Pomegranate Seeds,
Olive Oil Cured Persimmons and Walnut Vinaigrette

Nickel & Nickel Suscol Ranch Merlot, Napa Valley

by Executive Chef Trevor Eliason

This is a great fall salad for lunch or dinner, with rich, crisp flavors that are warming and invigorating. The duck can be served hot, which will slightly wilt the greens and the juices will become part of the vinaigrette. Or it can be served cold, as more of a classic, autumn salad. Enjoy with a glass of Nickel & Nickel Suscol Ranch Merlot.

 

Ingredients

Duck Breast:
2 duck breasts

Salt and pepper, to taste

2 tablespoons
extra virgin olive oil

Salad:
2 ripe persimmons

Salt and pepper, to taste

½ cup extra virgin olive oil

1 fennel bulb

4 cups spicy spring mix salad
(you may substitute with
regular spring mix)

½ cup pomegranate seeds

Walnut Vinaigrette:
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon sherry vinegar

Salt and pepper, to taste

½ teaspoon honey

1 tablespoon walnut oil

¼ cup olive oil

¼ cup toasted walnuts, chopped


2 tablespoons
pomegranate
molasses, for garnish
(available in grocery stores)



Method

Duck:
Pre-heat an oven to 325°F and season the duck breasts with salt and pepper.

The key to cooking a good duck breast is medium heat, which allows the skin to be crispy and the meat to stay a nice pink. I like to start with an oven safe sauté pan on medium heat. Add the olive oil, place the seasoned duck breast skin side down in the pan and move it around slightly for 5 seconds to keep the skin from sticking. Turn the heat down to medium-low and allow the fat to render. When the skin becomes a deep caramel color, flip the breast over and place in a 325°F oven for 8 minutes. Remove and allow the duck to rest for three minutes before slicing.

Salad:
Prepare ahead: Peel the persimmons and cut into 8 wedges. Place into a dish, season with salt and pepper, cover with olive oil and leave out on the counter over night.

Cut the fennel bulb in half and remove the root, then slice thinly on a mandoline. Toss the salad greens, cured persimmon, fennel and pomegranate seeds in a large bowl. 

Vinaigrette:
Whisk together the mustard, lemon juice, sherry vinegar, salt, pepper and honey in a small bowl. While whisking vigorously, slowly drizzle in the walnut oil followed by the olive oil. Fold in the toasted chopped walnuts and adjust seasoning.

To assemble, dress the salad with the vinaigrette and season as needed with salt and pepper. Place the salad in the middle of the plate and fan the duck breast over the top. Drizzle the pomegranate molasses over the breast. Enjoy with a glass of Nickel & Nickel Suscol Ranch Merlot.

Serves 2


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