Ed Brown's "Chicken and the Egg"
Ed Brown | Yield: 6
Chef Ed Brown's silky poached chicken breast is napped with a velvety, truffle studded sauce. Served alongside hearty polenta enriched with foie gras butter and the perfect poached egg, the real question isn't "Which came first?" but "Which to eat first?"
- 6 organic jumbo grade A eggs
- 6 ounces Foie Gras Cubes, brought to room temperature
- 3 tablespoons butter, brought to room temperature
- 2 tablespoons Duck Fat, plus more as needed
- 5 small leeks, washed, trimmed, white part roughly chopped, whole greens reserved, divided use
- 3 Organic Free-Range Chicken, approx. 3lbs each, breasts removed, boneless with skin on, drumsticks roughly cut into large pieces
- 2 shallots, peeled and sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled and bruised
- 6 thyme sprigs
- 6 1/2 cups double strength chicken stock
- 1/2 cup polenta
- 3/4 cup dry white wine
- 3 tablespoons Black Truffle Butter
- 1 bunch fresh chervil
- For the poached eggs: Prepare a water bath with a thermometer or immersion circulator and keep at a constant 145 degrees F. Gently place eggs, still in their shells, into the bath and let cook for 48-55 minutes. (Alternately, bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil about 15 minutes before serving, gently drop the eggs in, still in their shells, for 5 minutes and 20 seconds. Remove eggs from pot and gently set into a bowl of iced water.)
- For the foie gras butter: In a food processor fitted with a chopping blade, combine foie gras and butter. Pulse at high speed until well emulsified, remove and reserve in the refrigerator.
- For the polenta: In a large stock pot or dutch oven over medium-high heat melt 1 tablespoon of duck fat. Add drumsticks and cook, barely moving, to allow for maximum color, about 15 minutes or until evenly browned on all sides. Add leeks, shallots and garlic. Reduce heat to medium and cook until vegetables are tender. Add thyme and 3 1/2 cups chicken stock, bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes.
- Strain broth into another stock pot over medium heat. Using a whisk, stir in polenta until well combined, bring to a boil then simmer for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to low, whisk in foie gras butter mixture until evenly incorporated. Remove from heat, season to taste with salt and freshly ground pepper, reserve warm.
- For the chicken: In a large, heavy sauté pan or open casserole, melt 1 tablespoon of duckfat. Add leeks and sweat without color. Add chicken breasts, skin side down, reduce heat to low then add wine, simmer for 5 minutes. Add stock and bring to a very gentle, bare simmer then reduce to low and cover with the reserved leek greens. Let the chicken gently cook for approximately 25 minutes. Remove from the fire a few times for a few minutes if needed.
- When the chicken is cooked, remove and discard leek greens and reserve breasts. Strain the cooking liquid to another pan and reduce over medium-high heat to 3/4 cup of liquid. Whisk in the truffle butter and remove from heat. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.
- To serve: Place 4-5 ounces of polenta in a wide, shallow soup bowl to create a "puddle". Crack each egg into a small dish, then transfer to a large spoon leaving only the neatly poached egg on the spoon and any messy white in the bowl to discard. Place in the center of the polenta. Season the egg with Maldon salt and garnish with fresh chervil.
- Remove the skin of each chicken breast. Place 1 breast in the center of each serving plate. Spoon sauce evenly over each breast. Garnish with brussel sprout leaves sautéed in duck fat, glazed baby turnips and sautéed chanterelle mushrooms.