Sunday, 13 September 2015

Recipe - Duck Boulangere, Stuffed Aubergines

I've become more like my mother in such subtle ways, I'm terrified that this will continue as I get older to the point that I fail to be self aware about it. This particular chain of thought has been encouraged by Olive Kitteridge, where you can see a cantankerous old woman slowly losing grip of reality and feeling like a victim with no purchase on that fact. A mark or what not to become. Unfortunately, it seems sometimes like I have limited control over it. I don't care about if my sheets match and struggle to imagine when that'll change. I hate waste and wash my hands too much and get anxious when things aren't just so. I would probably be a better cook if only I could stop adding ingredients. On the other hand, it works out quite well sometimes - like adding molasses to the stuffed aubergine recipe below. That being said, Ottolenghi's version probably still beats it. 

Duck boulangere
4 duck legs, washed and patted dry 
3 baking potatoes, very thinly sliced 
3 onions, very thinly sliced
6 cloves of garlic, finely sliced 
A few sprigs of rosemary, stalks removed and torn  
Salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 180. 
In a rectangular casserole dish, layer the potatoes so they're slightly overlapping. Sprinkle onions, garlic and rosemary over each layer then season with salt and pepper and repeat.
Place the duck legs on top, seasoned thoroughly with salt and pepper. 
Add enough boiling water to come just below the top layer of potatoes.
Bake in the oven for 1.5 - 2 hours, until the potatoes are soft and the duck is tender. (Cover with foil if it's looking burny)

This is good with garlicky spinach. The duck is also good as leftovers stir fried with onion, noodles, cabbage and hoisin sauce. 

Stuffed aubergines with molasses and pine nuts 
Preheat oven to 220 degrees Celsius.
Half 4 aubergines, place cut side up in a deep roasting tin and drizzle well with salt and olive oil.
Place in the oven for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, chop 2 onions and fry over a medium heat in a tablespoon of olive oil with 1.5 tablespoons of paprika, 1.5 teaspoons of cumin and a tablespoon of cinnamon until the onion is translucent - about ten minutes.
Add 500g lamb mince, 50g pine nuts, a teaspoon of sugar, a teaspoon of salt and a tablespoon of tomato purée. Fry until the lamb is browned.
Add about 40g of finely chopped mint and parsley. 
In a cup, mix the juice of 1 lemon, 50ml water and 50ml grape molasses. 
Spoon the lamb mixture over each aubergine.
Pour the molasses mixture into the bottom of the tray.
Bake for 1 - 1.5 hours, tightly covered with foil, until the aubergines are soft. I served this with an adapted version of Ottolenghi's basmati with chickpeas and lettuce with broad beans salad.

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