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Duck with Pomagranate Sauce -- Anitra alla Melagrana

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Duck with Pomegranate Sauce, Anitra alla Melagrana; The sweetness and richness of duck balance the astringency of pomegranate juice nicely. This recipe was presented on a morning TV show transmitted by Canale 5 (a privately owned network). I alas don't recall the name of the chef, though I do recall she has excellent stage presence. To serve 4 you'll need:

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours

Ingredients:

  • A duck, either whole or split up the breastbone and pressed flat
  • 2 medium sized onions, finely chopped
  • 2 pomegranates
  • 1/2 cup Port wine
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Sugar to taste

Preparation:

Begin by seeding the pomegranates, and squeeze most of the seeds in a potato ricer to extract their juice.

Chop the onions and lay them in a broad-bottomed pot. Sprinkle them with olive oil and sauté them; after a minute or two add the duck and sauté it too, turning everything about frequently, until the duck is browned on all sides. Sprinkle the wine into the pot and cook over a brisk flame until it evaporates, then reduce the flame and cook gently until the duck is done, adding a little warm water or broth or if it looks as if it is drying out.

When the dusk is almost done, heat the pomegranate juice in a pan. Remove the duck to a platter and cut it up. Blend the most of the onions and pan drippings. Degrease the blended drippings by brushing their surface with a rolled piece of absorbent paper and stir them into the pomegranate juice. Check seasoning, add a little sugar if need be, and pour the sauce over the duck, garnishing everything with the reserved pomegranate seeds and onion pieces.

The wine? Since this is sweet, I'd go with a white, for example a Bianco di Lugana or a Soave. Or perhaps even a reisling.

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