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Monday, January 18, 2010

Duck Liver Parfait with Blood Orange Glaze

Duck livers are a bit hard to come by so use chicken livers instead but do try to find them if you possibly can. We have a quail/duck farm close by otherwise; I would go to David Jones or hope a good butcher might be able to get them in for me.

The duck liver parfait recipe is my adaptation of a Damien Pignolet recipe. The jelly glaze topping is my own recipe.

Parfait ingredients:

600g duck livers cleaned of any green parts, blood vessels and fat
5 sprigs thyme
1 small bay leaf
1 clove garlic unpeeled and lightly crushed
50ml Grand Marnier
50ml Armagnac
100g unsalted butter
pinch sea salt
pinch white pepper
pinch grated fresh nutmeg
125ml double cream lightly whipped

Jelly Glaze ingredients:

300ml water
50ml Grand Marnier
2 x 5g Titanium gelatin sheets
4 slices glazed blood oranges, halved
10 small fresh bay leaves
16 whole peppercorns

Parfait method:

Toss the livers in the herbs and alcohol and leave to marinate overnight. Then remove the livers and set aside, discard the bay leaf and the garlic and strain the marinade into a small saucepan and reduce it until 2 tablespoons remain. Set aside. Melt the gelatin for 5 minutes in cold water until it softens, squeeze out and add it to the hot marinade. Stir until dissolved. Set aside.

Melt the butter over a low heat and add the livers, gently turning them until they change colour on the outside but remain pink on the inside. Turn them constantly for about five minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon to a clean plate and place them in the fridge for half an hour. Strain and reserve the cooking butter. Set aside.

The livers need to be cold before being pureed otherwise they will taste bitter. Puree them in a food processor with the marinade and strained butter until they are very smooth. Add salt, pepper, nutmeg and half the whipped cream. Turn the parfait into the bowl containing the remaining cream and fold it into the cream, very gently.

Lightly grease an 800ml capacity terrine with light cooking oil. Turn the parfait into the terrine and smooth down the surface. Cover with a lid or baking paper and refrigerate for at least six hours.

Jelly method:

Heat alcohol and reduce to one tablespoon, add the water and bring to a simmering point. Turn off heat. Melt the gelatin sheets in cold water until they soften, squeeze them out, add them to the hot flavoured water, stir until dissolved. Set aside to cool.

The setting procedure for the jelly is a three-stage process so leave plenty of time. Either start very early in the day or do it all the day before so there is no chance of it being under set! If the jelly is not firm it will slip off when the parfait is sliced thus ruining presentation and all your hard work.

Remove the parfait from the fridge, pour a thin layer of the gelatin mixture over the top and refrigerate again until set. Decorate with oranges halves, bay leaves and peppercorns. Spoon another thin layer of gelatin mixture over the top and refrigerate until set. Finally, pour the rest of the gelatin mixture over the top to set again.

Slice the parfait using a hot, cleaned knife between each slice. Serve with dry toast.


  1. I can testify that this is absolutely DELISH - thanks for sharing the recipe!

  2. hi, i just wondering how many gelatine do you put for the parfait? as it's not mentioned in the ingredients list. thank you

  3. Hi Adrian,

    the gelatine amount is 2 x 5g sheets of titanium gelatine. It is listed in the ingredients. Happy cooking and thanks for reading my blog. Cheryl

  4. Salut Cheryl,
    I came across your recipe for duck liver parfait ... it looks absolutely delicious and I will give it a go once I locate duck livers, they are hard to come by in Sydney. You probably don't remember, we met at a food photography workshop (with Dario) a few years back. Hope you've been well!