What is better than the best foie gras truffle, glazed in fig jam, with sweet and salty granola?
What is better than a little truffle of foie gras glazed in fig jam, with sweet and salty granola? Not much I would say! This is a fantastic appetizer or hors d’ oeuvres that can be prepped days in advanced. Foie gras pate can be intimidating if you have never tried to make it but in reality it is really easy it just takes a bit of time and patience.
This is a killer appetizer that is full of flavor. You have the richness from the foie. The salty and sweet from the fig and granola, along with a bit of crunch! These little truffles will definitely become your new addiction! Obviously, first and foremost you need the expensive ingredient, foie gras.
If you are in the Austin area, we have a fantastic local farmer, who farms local ducks called countryside farms. Pristine products, including other animals as well, I would highly recommend if you live in the area. They are one of 5 producers of foie gras and his products are some of the best I've ever seen. Here is the recipe for foie gras truffles, I hope you enjoy them.
Foie Gras Truffle with Fig and Granola
- 1 whole foie gras ( (1lb 1oz or 480g))
- 2 tbsp salt
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 2 tbsp sauternes wine (or other sweet wine)
- 3 cups oats
- 1 cup pumpkin seeds
- 1 cup sliced almonds
- 1/3 cup sunflower seeds
- 1 tbsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon ((you could get creative and use spices like curry))
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup raisins ((optional))
- 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut (shredded (optional))
Fig jam (store bought or homemade)
How to clean foie gras
Place foie gras on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and allow to come to room temperature. Once the foie gras is not so cold it will start to become more pliable. This is when you clean the foie gras of all the blood veins trying to touch it as little as possible because the heat from your hands will melt the foie gras. (gloves and a paring knife helps with this)
Follow the vein lines in the foie gras and remove any veins or extra fat or sinew, if you can’t find the blood veins just starting cutting into the foie gras all over you will start to see them. Don’t worry about messing up the foie gras, remember its butter and you going to reform it later. The more you cut it up the more veins you will fine. You must have the foie gras completely cleaned of veins to have a clean finished torchon or pate.
Once you have removed all the veins season the foie gras mix salt and sugar together in a bowl aggressively season the foie gras with the mixture making sure that every inch gets seasoned. You might not use all mix but be aggressive with it. Mix well using your hands (in gloves) so everything is well incorporated.
To wrap the foie gras take two long pieces of plastic wrap and overlap them. Then place the foie gras an inch from the bottom of the plastic wrap making a cylinder type shape.. Using the plastic wrap you roll the foie, using the techniques of pinching the sides and holding the foie gras in one hand and pulling the top of the plastic in the other hand (think sushi roll using the bamboo mat). You want to try and roll it as tight as you can.
Once you have roll it up as tight as you can, take a toothpick or cake tester and poke a few holes in the plastic for air bubbles to escape. Then take the two ends of the roll, pick the torchon up in the air and swing the torchon or twist the foie gras roll (torchon) so that it will become even tighter. The air will get pushed out and your torchon should become a little fatter from the ends becoming tighter. It should resemble a cylinder at this point.
Tie both ends of the plastic wrap with butcher’s twine. Place the torchon into a cryovac back and seal airtight. if you don’t have a cryovac use a ziplock and try to get all the air out and seal. Place in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
How to cook foie gras
After the 24 hours have passed, set your sous vide machine or pot of water to 140 degrees. Meanwhile get a large bowl of ice water ready. Take the foie gras torchon out of the refrigerator and place into the sous vide. Sous vide for 10 minutes.
At this point, pull the foie gras out of the water bath and place it in the ice bath to stop the cooking process. After about 2 minutes in the bath, take the foie gras out of the cryovac bag. To make things really easy you can pour all the foie gras and melted fat into a bowl (or food processor) and using a hand stick blender puree the foie gras for 1 minute (or food processor). It should look a little something like tan soup. This step is re-emulsifying the cooked and melted foie gras back together.
After you have your emulsified foie gras you now can put this pate into any mold you want. Two ways of doing the truffles. The first and easiest, is just placing the foie pate into a loaf pan or any container and let it cool for several hours until it is sets. Overnight is perfectly fine too. Once the foie is completely solidified use a small ice cream scoop to create the truffles.
Once you have the truffle balls then either place them back in the refrigerator or freezer for at least 30 minutes. (you have to remember that foie gras is just like butter, if you handle it too much it will melt or if it sits out too long it will soften, making it hard to work with especially if you are trying to retain a specific shape). So you want them really cold so you can glaze them with fig and granola.
Alternatively (second option) you could use half moon silicon molds. Take your foie pate and using a small pastry spatula fill each mold. Once all filled and smoothed over, place in freezer so you can cleanly remove it from the molds. Freeze for two- three hours or overnight. Take out from the freezer and unmolded the half moons. You can take a torch and quickly torch the flat side of the half moon halves of the foie gras crescents.
If you melt the foie gras ever so slightly then it will be enough to act as a glue to press them together to make a perfectly round ball or truffle. I would place them back in the freezer at this point until you are ready to glaze and crust the foie gras.
For the granola
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add sugar, oil, and maple syrup to a sauce pot. Bring to a simmer until the sugar has melted. Meanwhile put everything in a bowl except dried fruit. When the sugar has melted pour the mixture over the oats/nuts stirring everything together to incorporate evenly. Then pour on a sheet pan lined with a silpat or parchment and bake for 35-40 minutes or until completely dry and golden brown stirring the mixture every 10 minutes. Take out and let it cool to room temperature ( you can then add the dried fruit if you so choose. I wouldn't for this recipe but you will have some leftover, so feel free to for breakfast). Then place in a storage container.
Depending on how thick your fig jam is, you might need to dilute it just a tad with water so you get a nice glaze consistency.
Take 2 cups of granola and crush it all up either in a food processor or in a plastic bag with a mallet. Take a few balls of foie out of the freezer at a time and quickly roll it in the fig glaze and then into the granola.
Work quickly because the foie gras will start softening from the heat of your hands. Continue the process until they are all breaded. Keep in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve and enjoy!