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Featuring Cinnamon
Dry-Cured Magret with Duck Liver Mousse, Chinese Cinnamon, and Black Vinegar Reduction
by Anita Lo
Annisa, NYC
Adapted by StarChefs

Yield: Serves 12

1/4 cup kosher salt
1 tablespoon sugar
1 stick Chinese true cinnamon, crushed
4 "petals" star anise, crushed
1 teaspoons black peppercorns
4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
4 slices peeled ginger root, roughly chopped
4 scallion whites, sliced
1 breast of Magret duck


1 lobe grade B foie gras (about 1 1/4 pounds)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 shallot, peeled and minced
1 small clove garlic, peeled and minced
1/3 cup cognac
1 cup duck livers
Salt and pepper to taste
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1 cup heavy cream


3 cups balsamic vinegar
1 cup Chinese black vinegar
1 stick Chinese cinnamon
1 1/2-inch ginger

Mix together the salt, sugar, cinnamon, anise, peppercorns, garlic, ginger, and scallions in a bowl. Coat the duck breast evenly on both sides. Place in a dish and lightly cover with plastic. Place plate on top and weigh down with a can or something suitably heavy. Place in the refrigerator overnight. The next day, wipe off the excess cure. Wrap the duck breast in cheesecloth, tie with butcher string and refrigerate for 4 weeks, making sure that air is accessible to all sides (you may want to hang it from a shelf).

When the duck is finally cured, make the foie gras mousse. In a mixture of one part salt to 3 parts water, soak the foie gras at room temperature for one hour. Remove the veins with a knife Preheat the oven to 275 degrees F. In a sauté pan, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Add the shallots and garlic to the pan and cook slowly until they are translucent. Add the cognac and reduce until the cognac has almost all disappeared. Transfer the shallots and garlic to the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment, along with the cleaned foie gras, duck livers, salt and pepper, egg, and egg yolk. Process until smooth. Continue to process and add the cold cream in a steady stream until completely incorporated. Check and adjust the seasoning. With a rubber spatula, scrape the mousse into a terrine mold. Cover the top with aluminum foil. Place the terrine in a larger baking dish filled with hot water halfway up the side of the mold. Bake for 1 hour or until the mousse has just set. Remove from the hot water bath and let cool to room temperature, then chill in the refrigerator.

As the mousse is chilling, make the vinegar reduction by placing the vinegars, ginger, and cinnamon in a saucepan. Reduce them by half or until they reach a syrupy consistency. Strain into a glass bowl and set aside to cool.

Assemble the dish. Using a sharp knife or a meat slicer, thinly slice the duck breast against the grain. Place 2 tablespoons of the foie gras mousse on top of the duck breast and drizzle the vinegar reduction around.


These recipes were provided by participating chefs and have not been tested by The James Beard Foundation.