Smoked mallard salad with crispy duck heart croutons, clementine and cranberry relish
Words: James McKenzie
A delicious recipe from James' book "On The Menu"

Serves: 4

For the salad:
4 mallard breasts 
50g salt 
1 tsp crushed juniper berries
Zest of 2 clementines 
Smoking chips 
75g semi-dried cranberries
100g salad leaves
4 clementines
1 tbsp chopped chives
12 duck hearts
200ml orange juice 
100g white breadcrumbs
50g plain flour 
2 eggs 
4 slices air-dried ham

For the cranberry and clementine relish
1 bag of fresh cranberries
100g caster sugar
1 pinch of saffron
1 cardamom pod (crushed seeds)
8 clementines

1.Marinate the mallard breasts: mix the salt, juniper and orange zest and rub onto the breasts. Leave to marinate in the fridge, covered, for at least two hours. Remove from the fridge and rinse off the marinade; pat dry 
with kitchen paper.  

2.Place the smoking chips in a small stovetop smoking unit and heat up until smoking hot. Place the mallard breasts onto the rack, close the lid and smoke for around 15 minutes over a gentle heat on the stove. When they 
are smoked to taste, remove the smoker from the heat and leave to cool with the mallard inside. When cool, cover and refrigerate the mallard until needed.

3.To make the duck heart croutons: trim any sinew off the duck hearts and place in a pan with the orange juice. Cook with a lid on at a gentle simmer for about three hours until tender (I cook them sous vide in the 
orange juice). Remove and leave to cool, cut in half and pass through the flour, egg and breadcrumbs. When needed deep fry for about one minute at 180°C until golden and crispy.
4.Segment the clementines and place the segments from four of them with all the other relish ingredients into a saucepan. Cook for 10 minutes over a medium heat, or until the segments have broken up. Strain the fruit, 
reserving the liquid.

5.Place the cooking liquid back into pan and reduce over a high heat until it becomes a sticky syrup; stir constantly. Roughly chop all the cooked fruit, then return to the syrup. Leave to cool.

6.To make the salad, slice the mallard very thinly, place in a bowl with the four remaining segmented clementines, the roughly torn air-dried ham, chopped chives and the salad leaves. Dress with a simple vinaigrette. 

Serve topped with the warm crispy duck heart croutons and the relish.

PUBLISHED :November 2014
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