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Saturday, August 24, 2013

Daikon-Ponzu Duck Breast Recipe

Adjustment is a funny thing. One day you wake up, feel at home, go about your business, do some work, busy yourself and fall asleep feeling routine-ified. Then other days you want to throw a tantrum because where's the sushi and how come no one knows how to walk in public and why do they pre-slice deli meat in Boise and why is it not even Boar's Head. And by "you" I guess I mean me. 

Today I saw a tow zone sign that said "Don't park your car improperly or without authorization because a reluctant little tow truck will remove it!" And there was an image of a crying tow truck. Well I can relate to your feelings, cartoon Tow Truck, because back in NYC they'll drag your car away and they won't be sorry! 

Sometimes I'm confused by the things I am nostalgic for.

Well, anyway, like I've said in basically every post I've written so far, we have to make our own fun, build our own comfort. And while cooking with whatever is different and fresh over here is fun, we wanted a hearty staple that reminded us of dinner parties in Brooklyn and Sunday night meals we'd make when we were feeling fancy.

Enter the daikon-ponzu duck dish we've been making for at least six years now. The original recipe is from En Japanese Brasserie, a spot in the West Village that makes awesome homemade tofu and terrific garlic-shiso fried rice. And of course this amazing fusion dish, which is really easy to make at home.

Sauteed Duck Breast with Daikon and Ponzu 

2 boneless duck breasts
1 daikon radish, shredded
4 tsp. ponzu sauce
1 scallion 

Preheat an oven-proof skillet over a high flame, and preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Score crosswise hash marks in the skin side of the duck breasts. Salt and pepper both sides. When the skillet is very hot, lightly rub the breasts skin side down on the surface to release some duck fat. Sautee skin side down until browned and the hash marks pop out. Flip and sauté the meat side until it browns. Flip back onto the side side and stick it in the over for 7 minutes. Flip and bake for 7 more minutes. 

Remove the meat and let it rest on a cutting board. Keep the fat in the skillet and place over high heat. Add the daikon and sautee with the ponzu. Slice the duck and top with daikon. Then slice the scallions lengthwise and arrange artfully on top. 

Even when you're in the boonies, you deserve a little flair with dinner, right? A nice plating? And by you I mean me again.

The dish goes really well with a nice bottle of merlot from the aforementioned Camas Prarie Winery. Maybe cab would be even better next time. I'll let you know.

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