For a festive appertizer, what about pieces of foie gras on cooked seasonned pears, almost like a compote, sprinkled with spice gingerbread ?
Whether you make your own foie gras or you buy it, there are so many ways to impress your guests using it. In France, it is most commonly served on bread toasts. I like to offer foie gras on gingerbread toasts with fig jam or spiced onion confit or compote. Another solution is to choose to serve in small individual glasses or cups that we call verrines in French.
Verrines are individual servings for appetizers (even though they tend to be used as well for starters and desserts). Usually glasses are the size of an expresso coffee cup, but recently all kind of shape and size are seen. They are great for simple or more structured presentations with different layers and tastes. They always look elegant and allow many combinations according to your inspiration. The French just love verrines. I admit it’s quite interesting, fun and a hip way to present things.
I propose here to associate the foie gras with spices:
- A compote of pears lightly seasoned with cinnamon, gently cooked to become almost confit. You can change spice and its quantity according to your taste.
- Gingerbread reduced into powder or very small pieces. You can use my spice and honey gingerbread recipe, available on this website by using this link. My recipe has many different spices in it and is very tasty. If you read the article, you’ll learn about the origin of French gingerbread and its history through the centuries, which is quite fun. You may also buy gingerbread.
Preparation time: 10 min
Cooking time: 15 min (depending on your pears, ripe or not)
Quantity: 8 verrines
Specific equipment: 8 small glasses and spoons
Foie gras in order to have 1 or 2 bites in each verrine
4 to 6 pears according to their size (about 1.2 kg unpeeled)
1 large spoonful honey
3 pinches cinnamon
2 slices gingerbread
LES GRANDES ETAPES
Cook pears and let it cool down. Then prepare the verrines with the 3 ingredients (compote of pears, foie gras and crushed gingerbread).
Start by peeling pears and removing the seeds. Cut them into small pieces and place them in a saucepan with honey and cinnamon. Heat and let it cook for about 15 minutes over medium heat (without covering as you want the preparation to reduce). Cooking time depends on your pears. The more juicy and ripe they are, the longer they have to cook to reduce. The final texture should not be too liquid otherwise it will not be practical to eat. Once cooked, let the compote cool down.
Cut two slices of gingerbread and grind them in the blender. If your gingerbread is very soft, you can toast it. The drier it is, the easier it is to reduce into powder.
Finally cut some small pieces of foie gras and prepare your verrines: compote of pears at the bottom, one or two pieces of foie gras (according to their size or the width of your verrines) then sprinkle over the crushed gingerbread. Reserve before serving.