Seared Mustard Duck Breast / Potato Croquette / Herb Sautéed Corn and Cherry Tomatoes / White Asparagus / Carrot Puree / Coral Tuile

By Chef Nyale

Potato Croquettes 

Ingredients 

  • 500g potatoes cut into cubes
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • Pinch or tsp. salt 
  • Pinch or tsp. pepper 
  • 1 tbsp. milk
  • 1 tsp. fresh parsley chopped
  • 50g cheddar cheese grated
  • Half cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs beaten
  • Half cup breadcrumbs
  • Vegetable oil for frying

Method

  1. Place the potatoes in a large pot and fill it with cold water, enough to fully cover the potatoes. Add salt to the water and stir. Bring water to a boil over high heat then reduce to medium and cook for about 15 minutes or until the potatoes are fork tender.  
  2. Drain the potatoes and put them in a large bowl. Add the butter, salt, pepper, milk, and mash using a potato masher. Alternatively, you could mash the potatoes using a mixer. Stir in grated cheese and parsley.
  3. Prepare 3 shallow plates; one with the flour, the other with the beaten eggs and the last one with the breadcrumbs. Season the eggs and flour with salt and pepper. For that smoky flavour you can add some smoked paprika to the flour.
  4. Roll the mash into golf-ball size proportions  
  5. Roll the croquettes into the flour first, then dredge them in the beaten egg and finally roll them in breadcrumbs, making sure they are completely covered. You can refrigerate the croquettes for an hour before frying, this will ensure that they will hold their shape
  6. Fry them in a pot over medium to high heat. 
  7. Fry the croquettes in batches of 4 or 5 depending on the size of your pot. 

Seared Mustard Duck Breast

Ingredients 

  • 1 Duck Breast 
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 tbsp whole grain mustard 
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of pepper 

Method

  1. Prepare the duck breasts by scoring the top (where the fat layer is located) with a sharp knife into a diamond pattern. Do not cut into the meat, but halfway down the fat layer.  Cut diagonally in one direction, end to end, then score in the other direction, creating a diamond-like, hash mark pattern. 
  2. Season with salt and pepper on both sides.
  3. Heat a large, heavy non-stick pan on medium;  add the duck breast, skin-side down. 
  4. Cook until crispy and golden brown, then flip and cook the other side for about 5 minutes. 
  5. Rub wholegrain mustard on the top part of the duck breast and roast it in the oven to your desired tenderness

Vegetables

Ingredients 

  • 3 baby corns 
  • 2 cherry tomatoes cut in half
  • 3 white asparagus 
  • Pinch of finely chopped parsley
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of pepper

Method 

  1. Saute (lightly fry) your vegetables in a hot pan with butter and parsley to give them that extra healthy quality taste. 
  2. Season with salt and pepper. You can use canned corn and asparagus(drained) from a local supermarket.

Carrot Puree

Ingredients 

  • 500g carrots
  • Half an onion
  • Pinch of salt
  • 10g butter

Method

  1. Peel, wash and slice carrots
  2. Peel onion and chop
  3. Put vegetables in a small pot, cover with water and add salt. 
  4. Bring to a boil and leave to cook for 15 to 20 minutes until tender when pierced with a knife. 
  5. Remove from heat, drain vegetables and reserve half cup of the cooking water. 
  6. Mash vegetables using an electric  masher or blender
  7. Add butter and mix.
  8. Add some of the reserved cooking water until you get the texture you want.

Coral Tuile

Ingredients

  • 90ml water
  • 10g self raising flour
  • 1 drop food colouring
  • 2tbsp oil

Method 

Mix ingredients together to form a thin batter. Place in a container that is easy to pour from. In a small non-stick pan, add a good amount of oil to cover the base of the pan.

Pour in a small amount of batter. The mixture will fry and separate and begin to look like lace. Tuiles are done when they look dull. Remove and place on a paper towel to absorb excess grease.

Chef Bio

To say that cooking was a passion would be a lie, cooking chose me. It was something that came up after sitting at home for quite a while and still contemplating on which career path to take. I actually wanted to be the next Cristiano Ronaldo. I tried to play for a few football clubs in Zimbabwe including division 2 teams and also trained with the Dynamos Juniors but all to no avail.

I found my calling to cuisine in the year 2014 when my best friend Takudzwa called me to his home to read about an advert in the newspaper about a cooking school; the Culinary Arts Academy in Harare Zimbabwe that was being opened. I decided to enroll at the academy where I pursued a diploma in Food Preparation.

Attachment training was a prerequisite during the course and I managed to undertake mine in 2 leading hotel establishments namely Meikles and Cresta Lodge where I fell in love with the Pastry section.  After completing my diploma, my career took a little switch when I got a job at Simbisa brands formerly known as Innscor. It was a different path but that is where I got my big break.

It all came to one day when I served one of Zimbabwe’s celebrity chefs Kudakwashe Makoni popularly known as The Black Chef, we recognized each other for the very first time in person since we were friends on Instagram.

Our brief chat turned into a life changing conversation. The Black Chef told me there was a restaurant (Cafe Nush) being opened at Village Walk in Borrowdale where he would be the head chef and wanted me to be a part of his team.

I joined the team as a pizzoli at the newly opened restaurant in June of 2017. As a result of my success and through learning from other chefs, I was promoted to sous chef and this opened more doors for me. 

A few years down the line, I got an opportunity in March 2020, to be the head chef of a newly opened MilaDee’s Joint Restaurant in Mauritius and that is where I currently am. 

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