Sunday, July 25, 2010
A Study of Pheasant (part 2)
Welcome back to the second installment of "A study of pheasant"
In this one I wanted to showcase the fruit flavors a little more and focus less on richness. With that being said, I still poached the ballontines in xvoo. So, there is a little fat there to savor.
I used the leg this time as a farce meat for the center of the ballontine and added a gooseberry gastrique that Shannon made the other day. Also, I did an apricot gastrique to be the real acidic component of the dish. For one more fruit component, I did two slices of grilled peach. The two fruits and the berries are all in season right now and grown within a 15km radius. How could I not want to showcase those flavors.
With all that fruit going on I needed to bring some more richness to the dish in order to mellow out the acidity and help restore the subtle flavors of the pheasant. So after poaching the pheasant in xvoo, I used that oil to make a mayo with a touch of truffle oil, some grainy dijon and lemon juice. Also, the jus made from all the carcass and trim of the birds brought the earth tonal flavors that give a comfort to a dish.
The dish definitely needed some texture and some starch components on the plate. Since I already had a lot going on I decided to make the starch crispy and kill two birds. Actually it was 8 birds, but that's neither here nor there. Grated, raw Yukon Gold potatoes, with all their juice squeezed out. Then a little bit seasoning and a few herbs. Into the pan to fry all crispy like. Success.
The plate was garnished with some bush basil for freshness and of course it's affinity for stone fruits. I also garnished with a light sprinkling of smoked sea salt, because it's delicious.
People really seemed to go for this one. We sold out in no time at all. I love that people will enjoy this kind of food in the summer here. Now, we just need to get some more of the locals eating like this on a more year round basis and we'll really be in business then.