Tuesday 12 May 2020

Foie Gras with pears, in balsamic vinegar and honey.

I suppose anything with Foie Gras is considered 'incorrect' these days - but I've decided that I'm now of an age where I'm too old to change. And this recipe is deeply, deeply splendid. It's a slight re-working of the version in Raymond Blanc's 'Blanc Vite' which was his healthy-eating volume, after he'd had a cardiac event, some years ago. There's an overall emphasis throughout the book on low carb, and so it  plays well into the only kind of 'reduction' regime that will work in this house (the dessert section is a bit ho-hum, apart from his chocolate and/or lemon 'pots' and his recipe for chocolate and raspberry cake, but the rest of the volume more than makes up for this deficiency). TD decided in January that he needed to lose weight, and a low carb menu regime began there and then - with the result that in four months he has managed to lose all-but twenty kilos (and with still consuming three courses for dinner every evening, and with not having compromised on his pre-dinner prosecco and his half-a-bottle-of-wine with dinner, either...happiness all round!).

For two:

Ingredients: four generous slices of foie gras (about 100g per person); 2 ripe pears; 2 tbs balsamic vinegar; 25g butter; 2 tsp clear honey; 200 ml chicken stock; a splash of lime juice.


1. Peel, core and quarter the pears, and cook over medium heat in the butter, using a frying pan. Cook the pears for two or three minutes on each side, until they have clearly softened.

2. Add the vinegar to the pan, raise the heat, and continue to cook until the vinegar has all cooked away - keep turning the pieces of pear from time to time during this process.

3. Add the honey to the pan, and turn the pears in it as it melts and mixes with the cooking juices in the pan. Remove the pear pieces from the pan and keep to one side.

4. Add the stock to the pan and reduce by half over high heat; add to the reduced liquid the lime juice, and continue to reduce until the mixture in the pan is noticeably thick.

5. Return the pear pieces to the pan and stir to coat them thoroughly in the sauce.

6. Heat a separate small frying pan until it is very hot, and then sear the slices of foie gras, one minute on each side. (Keep the fat which is given off, and use subsequently for roasting any vegetable such as potatoes or celeriac).

7. To serve, divide the pieces of pear between two heated plates, and place the foie gras slices on top. Pour the sauce over the top of all.

And then, luxuriate.

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