This week I've set myself a challenge to finish up as much as possible of the perishable food in our refrigerator. To be honest, I always set myself that challenge before leaving on a long holiday and I rarely follow through. But this time, my dear Critic has left one week before me. It's so much easier for me to experiment when he's away. If I come up with something nice to do with the ingredients in the kitchen, I can post it here. And if I don't, no one is the wiser.
And so I turned to the smoked magret de canard left over from a pierre à griller and raclette meal we made when the nieces were out for a visit. I'm not usually creative with smoked duck; I buy it for a specific purpose, such as grilling on a hot stone. It's very fatty and so it has to be something special.
I decided that rather than use the smoked duck in the usual French manner (raw, with a thick layer of fat intact, on a salad) I would try to reduce the fat content and cook it.
Smoked Duck and Pasta
250 g smoked magret de canard (duck breast)
1 onion (optional)
2 cloves of garlic, sliced thinly
200 ml or 1 cup chopped fresh tomatoes
7-8 fresh sage leaves, chopped
olive oil to taste
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Pasta for two: penne, rotini, something that will hold a sauce well
While the pasta is cooking, put the slices of duck breast in a hot frying pan. As they fat on them melts, shake the pan to spread it so that the meat does not stick to the pan. Add the garlic, the fresh sage and (if you are going that way) the onion, roughly chopped. When the garlic (and onions if appropriate) are soft and flavorful, pour off the excess fat from the pan. Add the freshly chopped tomatoes and simmer until they are soft.
When the pasta is done, drain and toss with a little olive oil and salt. Add the sauce and toss, top with grated cheese. Enjoy the smoky, garlicky, sage-infused goodness of the pasta!
Note: I don't have my Critic to hand, but the nanny finished the leftovers the next day and told me it was delicious!