I believe that if you don't derive a deep sense of purpose from what you do, if you don't come radiantly alive several times a day, if you don't feel deeply grateful at the tremendous good fortune that has been bestowed on you, then you are wasting your life. And life is too short to waste. - Srikumar Rao
After completing school and jumping back on the Cook the Book Fridays wagon, I knew my return to "French Fridays" would not be complete without an epic ingredient recipe. Some rites of passage can not be ignored.
Duck terrine with figs certainly filled many squares on the cookbook bingo:
- Obscure ingredient - check
- Questionable ingredient - check
- Unappealing presentation - check
- Multi-town/ store ingredient scavenger hunt - check
- Opportunity to use inane baking vessel - double check
- Dubious combination of ingredients - BINGO
Saturday morning. 8:00 AM. Store 1. Livers, check. Duck, no. 8:45 AM. Next store doesn't open until 9:AM. Hang out. No duck. Store 3. No duck. Store 4. Not open yet, come back at 10. Store 5. No duck. Store 6. No duck. Go back to store 4. Confit duck legs. I can work with that - I'll take two. Go home. Nap.
Next challenge. Making the terrine when no one was around to see what I was putting in it. You see, if there are chicken livers in the house and I can not prove that they are destined for a batch of pup treats it gets kind of ugly.
I waited until nap time (yes, that's a thing in my house) and was able to get the terrine prepared on the sly. The preparation was fairly simple; although, I did cut back on some of the suggested meat quantities because holy mother of animal consumption (and that whole direction following thing - who does that?).
Apparently, the reference to the 9" by 5" dish didn't set off the right warning bells in my head, because even my reduced batch filled my terrine pan (yes, I had a terrine pan hiding in the basement) and I still had enough to fill two mini loaf pans. (Anyone remember the old Arby's "We have the meats (TM)" commercials? Or all of those Epic Meal Time You-Tube videos?)
After spending a couple of hours in the water bath, this duck meatloaf (let's be real here people, a terrine containing four kinds of meat is a freaking meatloaf) decided it needed a nice long rest in the refrigerator.
Fast forward to the following weekend and the now ripe terrine is ready to go. Naively, I thought I could pass this off as part of a pre-dinner cheese board offering. Fruit. Olives. Cheese (aged cheddar and brie). Crackers. Crazy duck meatloaf.
Not so much.
To make a long story short, I was carrying terrine and crackers to work for one very long week... It was good, but by the end of the week I was totally over it.
This post participates in Cook the Book Fridays, where a group is currently working their way through David Lebovitz's My Paris Kitchen (not an affiliate link). The recipe for Duck Terrine with Figs can be found here on Serious Eats.
For my US friends - hope you have a safe and happy 4th of July and Happy Canada Day to my friend up North.