Crisp Napoleon of Foie Gras with Caramelized Turnip and Marinated Red Onions
Stacks of crisp, golden potato triangles, foie gras, peppery watercress, and pickled red onions are further enhanced by discs of caramelized turnip. Turnip appears again as an accent sauce, paired with honey-lime vinaigrette. The onions, vinaigrette, potato slices, turnip discs, and turnip sauce can all be prepared ahead of time, leaving just the searing of the foie gras and assembly of the dish for the last minute. Note that Chef D’Amato rotates each potato triangle slightly as he assembles the stacks, a simple trick which makes the dish more attractive to the eye.
- Pickled Red Onions
- Red Onion - 1 medium, thinly sliced into rings
- Red Wine Vinegar - 1/4 cup
- Water - 3/4 cup
- Sugar - 1 tablespoon
- Bay Leaves - 2
- Cinnamon Stick - 1
- Clove - 1
- Allspice - 3
- Pinch of nutmeg
- Celery Sprigs - 1 thyme
- Peppercorns - 15
- Kosher salt - 1 teaspoon
- Star Anise - 1
- Honey-Lime Vinaigrette
- Lime Juice - 2 tablespoons
- Corn Oil - 1/4 cup
- Kosher salt - 1/4 teaspoon
- Freshly ground black pepper - 1/8 teaspoon
- Honey - 1 teaspoon
- Idaho potatoes - 3/4 pound (1 or 2 very large Idaho potatoes)
- Olive Oil - 2 tablespoons
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- Turnips - 2 medium, peeled and sliced1/4-inch thick
- Honey - 1/2 cup
- Unsalted Butter - 2 tablespoons
- Red Wine Vinegar - 2/3 cup
- Duck Stock - 1 cup
- Duck Foie Gras - 8 ounces, fresh, cut into eight 1-ounce pieces
- Watercress - 1 large bunch, cleaned
- Chives - 8, chopped
To prepare the pickled onions: Put the onions in a non-aluminum container. Combine the water, vinegar, sugar, and salt in a non-aluminum saucepan. Tie the remaining ingredients in a cheesecloth bag and place in the saucepan. Bring the liquid to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Pour over the onions and cover. Let stand at room temperature for 45 minutes, then refrigerate overnight.
To prepare the vinaigrette: Combine all ingredients and put in a squeeze bottle.
To prepare the potato: Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Peel the potato and slice lengthwise into 1/8-inch slices on a mandoline or V-slicer. You will need 6 nice, big slices. Trim the sides until straight, then cut diagonally into triangles, making 12 large potato triangles. Place the triangles on the prepared baking sheet and lightly brush with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Cover with a sheet of parchment paper and place another baking sheet on top to keep the potatoes flat. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, checking every 10 minutes; when the potatoes are beginning to crisp, remove the top baking sheet and parchment and cook 5 to 10 more minutes, until crisp and golden. Set aside to cool.
Cut the turnip slices into 2-1/2-inch circles; reserve the trimmings for the sauce. Put 1/4 cup of the honey in a non-stick saute pan and cook over medium-high heat until it begins to caramelize. Add the turnip circles, 1 tablespoon of the butter, and 1/3 cup of the vinegar. Toss, cover, reduce the heat, and simmer for 3 to 5 minutes, until the turnips are softened. Uncover the pan and let the liquid evaporate. Remove from the heat and season with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
Cook the turnip trimmings with the remaining honey, butter, and vinegar in the same manner. Reduce the liquid by half, then stir in the duck stock. Reduce by half again. Strain the sauce, then set aside. Keep warm.
Season the foie gras slices on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat a non-stick pan over high heat; when the pan is hot, sear the foie gras pieces for about 10 seconds per side, until crisped. Drain on towels and keep warm. Do not crowd the pan; work in batches if necessary.
Toss the cleaned watercress with salt, pepper, and about a quarter of the vinaigrette (enough to moisten).
To serve: Place a potato slice on each warmed serving plate. Place a turnip slice on each. Top each with a piece of foie gras. Place a little dressed watercress and some pickled onion slices on the foie gras and spoon a little turnip sauce over the greens. Repeat, turning the triangle slices slightly relative to the first triangles, then top each stack with a final potato triangle turned slightly again. Sprinkle red onion garnish on top of the final potato slices. Drizzle turnip sauce and vinaigrette around the napoleons. Sprinkle the plates with chopped chives.