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Seared Foie Gras

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I just shelled out $88 for a raw D'Artagnan Grade A moulard foie gras, which I'm going to slice and sear. While I've done this before, I've forgotten how hot the naked pan should be, and how long to cook it (about a minute on each side, I recall). I'll make a fast lingonberry/port reduction once the foie gras is seared. Any advice on how hot a pan?

Happy New Year, everybody!

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  1. y
    yvonne johnson

    i've just consulted Soltner's Lutece cookbook (p. 210).
    "dredge slices of f.g. with flour, season with salt & pepper. melt one table-spoon of butter (more probably as this is part of recipe where more is included) over MEDIUM heat, and saute f g for 3 mins each side...brown on outside and little pink on inside"

    1. According to D'artagnan, the foie gras should be seared in a very hot, dry pan without any flour or added fats(duh, dry pan).

      1 Reply
      1. re: Heidi
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        yvonne johnson

        interesting differences among instructions. soltner's "saute" method (mentioned earlier) uses butter with medium heat....and come to think about it, 3 mins each side does seem like a long time. But he is a genius. In another recipe he uses butter, with steak fat, and cooks f.g. over high heat for 1 and one half minutes each side. Rosengarten suggests searing f.g.in butter, oil, or fat over high heat for a few moments. Portale suggests grilling f.g. (one minute each side--no added fat). And of course there are those who will not cook f.g. on principle (Nigel Slater for example--his opinion I'd go for, but none available). I do like it myself, though.

      2. w
        wendy jackson

        How did your liver turn out? Too late for you now, but here's how we did it in the restaurant kitchens I've worked in: Season foie gras with salt & pepper, HOT pan (smoking), no fat, about a minute per side, if that.

        3 Replies
        1. re: wendy jackson

          Happy new year, Wendy!

          That's PRECISELY how I did it: Very hot All-Clad non-stick pan, 1/2" slices of the liver, salted and peppered, NO FAT in pan (because Lord knows you don't need it after about 10 seconds the foie gras releases a sluice of fat), turning after 1 minute (or less), and plating before another minute has passed. Then I carefully added 1/2 cup of Merlot, 1 teaspoon of balsamic, and 2-3 tablespoons of prepared lingonberries. 1 minute later we were all in some sort of heaven. In a way, it's a good thing raw foie gras is so expensive--this could become a quite a habit. It couldn't possibly be easier or richer or more delicious. Wow.

          1. re: Tom Steele
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            wendy jackson

            Sounds like you got it exactly right, Tom! I have to admit, when I was the foie gras cook, my favorite part of the day was the "taster" piece that I "had" to eat to ensure the quality of that day's liver! Couldn't get enough of the stuff (still can't).

            1. re: wendy jackson

              Oh, Wendy, it's a serious addiction, I well know. Hideously expensive, too. If you're lucky, grade-A raw foie gras will run you UNDER $70/pound. And once you acquire a taste for the stuff, nothing else really comes close: It's truly in a class of its own. My New Year's resolution: Sear foie gras at home at least four times before next New Year's.

              Talk about incentive!