Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Bacon and Foie Gras Soup Dumplings


This recipe was based on a popular dish from the restaurant Annisa in New York City by Chef Anito Lo.  It is based on the traditional soup dumplings that are featured prominently on Chinese menus as dim sum and has been slightly upgraded here with the addition of seared foie gras and Pacotized foie gras mousse.

The Bacon Broth  and Pacotized Foie Gras Dumplings have a molten “soup” core that explodes when you take a bite.  The seared foie gras adds a decadent richness that off sets the briny flavor of the soup.  The reduction on the plate adds a combination of bitter vinegar and the deep, sweet flavor of eel sauce that contrasts the other elements of the dish.  Sliced scallions provide some needed crunch and bright, fresh flavor.

Jellied Bacon Broth Filling:
-2 cups bacon stock
-2 cups chicken stock
-1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
-1 slice of fresh ginger
-1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
-1 piece of star anise
-1/4 cup of gelatin

Pacotized Foie Gras Mousse:
-1 lobe of grade B foie gras, cleaned and deveined
-Kosher salt, as needed
-Freshly toasted and ground white pepper, as needed

Vinegar Reduction:
-1 cup balsamic vinegar
-1 cup Bansankan eel coating sauce

Dumplings:
-36 wonton skins
-2 egg yolks
-1 tablespoon of cornstarch
-1 teaspoon of water
-12 ounces of grade A foie gras, sliced into 12 portions
-1 tablespoon of unsalted butter

For Garnish:
-1 ounce of fresh, thinly sliced scallions

Preparation:
Combine all ingredients for the Bacon Broth Filling, minus the gelatin, in a small sauce pan and simmer on low heat for twenty minutes.  Strain the broth through a chinois, then add the gelatin to the warm broth and stir lightly until the gelatin is fully incorporated.  Let the broth sit, covered, for thirty minutes to allow the gelatin to bloom.  Reheat the broth over a double boiler to melt the gelatin, then strain into a shallow ½ hotel pan and place in the refrigerator.  The broth should chill and harden within an hour, and can be sliced into ½ inch cubes.

For the foie gras mousse, season the grade B foie gras liberally with salt and pepper and allow to sit in the refrigerator overnight.  The next day, cryovac the foie gras and cook in an immersion circulator at 250 degrees Fahrenheit until the foie gras begins to melt and is warm through the center.  Place the foie gras, still packaged, into an ice bath until it has chilled fully.  Pacotize  the foie gras twice to create the a mousse, then cryovac again to remove any air.  Refrigerate the packaged mousse for several hours until solid, then dice into ½ inch cubes.

To prepare the dumplings an egg wash will be needed.  Combine the egg yolk, water and cornstarch in a small bowl and mix thoroughly.  To assemble the dumplings, brush the wonton skins with eggwash then place a cube of foie gras mousse and a cube of jellied soup in the center of each wonton.  Fold the wrapper over and carefully press out any air surrounding the filling.  The wontons can be sealed either with the back of a fork or by crimping the edges.  At this point the dumplings can be frozen for further use if desired, there is no need to thaw before boiling.

To prepare the sauce, combine the eel sauce and balsamic vinegar and reduce by one third.  The sauce should just reach nappe. 

For service: 
Drop the dumplings into simmering water for about two minutes; the wonton skins will change from white to opaque and you will be able to see the filling become liquid.  Toss the dumplings with whole butter and season as needed with salt and pepper.  Season the portioned grade A foie gras with salt and pepper and sear very briefly on high heat without any fat added to the pan.  The slices of foie gras can then be cut into thirds.  Drizzle the plate with the reduction, place the dumplings on the reduction, top with the sliced foie gras and garnish with the scallion after refreshing it quickly in ice water.  

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