Smoked Duck and Fig Tartine Recipe
“Tartine” is just a fancy word for an open-faced sandwich, using a single slice of bread with several ingredients on top. Growing up, my favorite was a tartine au Nutella, which as the name implies is a slice of bread slathered with the famous hazelnut chocolate spread.
Tartines can of course be savory, and today’s recipe combines, some of my favorite and most decadent ingredients. Fresh figs and red onions from our garden, sinful brie cheese, smoked duck, homemade mayonnaise and pistachios are all irresistible in their own right, and when layered together over a toasted naan, turn any meal into an unforgettable memory. This tartine hits every note; it's sweet, smoky and extraordinarily succulent.
This may be too expensive to be worth serving at a large party. So if you plan to make these appetizers for a group, you might want to substitute another kind of meat in place of the smoked duck.
Yields: 8 appetizers1 (1½-pound) package smoked duck breast log, skinless
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
1 clove garlic, freshly grated
1 lemon, zested and freshly squeezed
4 sprigs thyme, chopped
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon cayenne powder
½ teaspoon black pepper, coarsely ground
4 tablespoons canola oil
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon fresh dill, plus extra for garnish
1 teaspoon sea salt (or regular salt)
1 dozen ripe black figs
½ cup homemade mayonnaise
¼ cup pistachio kernels, lightly crushed
½ wheel brie cheese, sliced
Making fig onion relish:
Using a sharp knife, quarter 4 figs. Following with the blade of the knife, remove the skin. Coarsely chop the flesh.
In a small pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add the red onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6-8 minutes, then add the figs. Stir with a wooden spoon. Return to the stove using the lowest setting and cook for about 5 minutes. Add dill, ⅛ teaspoon salt and pepper. Let cool completely.
Preparing the smoked duck log: In a bowl, combine the lemon zest, ginger, garlic, thyme, paprika, cayenne powder and black pepper.
Pat dry the duck log using paper towels. Rub the meat with the cayenne powder mixture. Drizzle with about 2 teaspoons of canola oil, chill and allow to marinate for at least 15 minutes.
Remove the duck from the refrigerator so it returns to room temperature and sprinkle it with salt.
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Pat the meat dry one more time.
With a brush, grease a cast iron skillet grill with the rest of the oil (a regular frying pan will work, but you won't get the nice grill marks) and heat until it's really hot, almost to the smoking point. Using tongs, place the duck in the pan (still on high heat) and cook for 2-3 minutes. It's important that you do not pierce the meat so it stays moist and tender. You want to create nice grilling marks. Flip the meat on the other side. Grill for another 3 minutes until you get golden-brown goodness. Immediately transfer the skillet to the oven and roast the duck for about 10-12 minutes, or a bit less or more, depending on how pink you like the meat.
Remove the pan from the oven. Sprinkle the duck with sea salt. Cover with a piece of aluminum foil. Let the meat sit for at least 10 minutes before slicing. Slice into thick pieces.
Lightly toast the naans and cut into quarters.
Slice the remaining figs into thick pieces.
Spread the pieces of naan with a thin layer of fig onion relish. Top with slices of brie cheese. Place the tartines under the broiler until the cheese starts melting. Cover with slices of duck and fresh figs. Garnish with a dots of mayonnaise and a sprinkle of crushed pistachios. Decorate with fresh dill. Serve immediately.
I didn't want the fig onion relish to turn too dark so I peeled the figs. You can leave the skin on if it doesn't bother you.
You could simply re-heat the smoked duck but I preferred cooking it to create a golden-brown crust.
You can find tandoori naans at Costco in the bread aisle.
I buy smoked duck at my favorite local market, the Milk Pail in Mountain View. You could also use your favorite cured meat, smoked pheasant, smoked turkey or ham.
Published By: on September 10, 2012.