The concept of whole animal cooking is intriguing and satisfying but it does take me out of my comfort zone. One of the few things I don’t naturally enjoy is organ parts, so using them when cooking is a stretch for me. But the whole point of this adventure is to figure it out, not waste food, and create great flavors.
I started with the easiest parts and will go from there. Foie gras is one of the few organs that I have enjoyed, so as part of the duck whole animal series I made a mousse. Even four ducks from Bar 5 Meats did not give me enough liver to take an honest try, so I supplemented with organic chicken livers.
If you are going to bother to make a mousse, you should also make a gelle to seal the deal and find a presentable container. The Wedge Coop has a number of nice glass containers near their produce department. Both are an easy step and add some serious class to the endeavor.
I often adapt recipes or am inspired by them. In this case, a knowledgeable butcher recommended a recipe from the Meat Hook Meat Book which I followed verbatim. I also found a gelle recipe online.
The result was silky with a layered flavor. Definitely a good start to adventures in organs.
Mousse – From the Meat Hook Meat Book
Gelee (I only used the gellee portion of this recipe, and substituted Cynar for Riesling to offset the silkiness of the duck with a bit of bitter flavor)