Sunday, December 27, 2009

White Bean and Mushroom Ragout with Shredded Duck

This was what I wanted to eat tonight,
so this is what I cooked:

1 leek, sliced
1 shallot, sliced
1/2 large onion, sliced
2 T. butter
1 T. duck fat, if you happen to be so lucky

Season with salt and pepper, and saute over low
heat for about 15 minutes, until all those lovely
onion-derivations begin to caramelize.

Then add:
about 2 cups sliced mushrooms -- I used
crimini and rehydrated black trumpet.
Some sliced celery -- as much as you want.
Saute for 2-3 minutes.

a couple of cups chicken stock
2 cans canelini beans, drained
a few sprigs fresh thyme, or about 1 t. dried thyme
1 generous bay leaf
a pinch of allspice
a pinch of cinnamon
a splash of white wine

Simmer on low heat for about 45 minutes.

shredded duck, as much as you want!
Stir well, let simmer a bit longer.

Taste, adjust seasonings, if necessary.
Sprinkle with chopped Italian parsley.

This is yummy homey French-style goodness
that I could probably eat every day
for the rest of my life.


  1. This sounds yummy enough to set a midnight feast in motion over here in NZ (substituting wood-smoked turkey for duck, perhaps?). Thanks for this recipe, T. Clear. I'm an advocate on behalf of the humble Canelini bean - think they're unappreciated, don't you?

    Lovely to read about your Christmas feasting. I wonder what culinary treats you have in store for your family to bring in the New Year? Have fun!

  2. Claire, I couldn't agree more re: cannellini beans (I think I spelled it wrong above). Once when I was in Ireland, I couldn't find any in the local grocery store and went into a minor panic. Alas. Found some dried cannellini's at a new gourmet grocery, at a premium price, though.
    This recipe would work with just about any meat/poultry with perhaps just a minor tweaking of the seasonings.It could even go vegan with olive oil and veggie broth.

    Damn, I do love to cook!

  3. .. and blessed are those who come into your orbit!!!

    I can think of few things more pleasurable than gathering around a table with food, family & friends. Light a candle or two and the ordinary becomes a celebration.

    Thanks for your recipe suggestions, T. Clear. I'm off to pick some Italian parsley from the garden...

  4. Okay, I went back and snagged a comment you made, just the other day: "Back in the day" I actually knew how to cook! Ha!"

    It seems you haven't lost your touch. You are an artist in the kitchen - of course.

  5. Duck....ugh. The only time I know of that I ate duck was in a refugee returnee community in Guate, near the Mexican border. In these delegation visits of sponsoring communities, at 7 am a boy or girl appeared to accompany one of the visiting delegates/h.r. observers to their home, for all 3 meals of that day. I was served duck soup from a nearby river for breakfast, lunch and dinner -- with great pride. At lunch and dinner I hid most of the meat in a napkin, in my pocket -- the gamiest, nastiest meat I have ever tasted. (Sorry...not cooked with the many lovely spices you mentioned, T...just, well... duck.)