It all began last winter, because of a FOIE GRAS. Here, the FOIE GRAS is served with small and thin toasted slices of white bread or brioche. I guess it’s so the bread doesn’t compete with the taste and texture of the more delicate foie gras / duck liver pâté . It’s also served with some kind of jam and/or jelly (usually fig or quince and sometimes sweet caramelized onions) and with a very strong and sweet white wine. I like it but I DON’T AGREE . . .
Believe it or not, heavier cold cuts and charcuterie sausages and salt-cured meats go very well with red wines but cheeses are better with beer and cider. Country bread is often used for both but it’s true that foie gras is softer and more subtle, so perhaps it needs a softer, sweeter, milkier bread, but no too much because foie gras is is also very fatty. To be honest, I love champagne or something else as bubbly and light as beer or cider to accompany heavier cheeses and foie gras. Some sweeter dried fruits are nice too, I must admit.
And now you know how this recipe happened. I made 2 breads, 1 for us and 1 for when guests came by, to be served with my salt-cured foie gras (which I’ll be showing you soon before the holidays because DECEMBER will be dedicated to WINTER HOLIDAYS RECIPES.
I wanted a bread that was sturdy and hardy and crusty on the outside, but with just enough tenderness and sweetness and fruitiness on the inside to go perfectly with the foie gras.
I got all the dried fruits I could gather, with as many colors and textures as possible (figs, apricots, cranberries, raisins, goji berries) then added a variety of nuts (cashews, walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds, pistachios, peanuts) and finally some seeds (sunflower, pepitas, flax and sesame too). You have to soak everything otherwise they suck up the moisture in the dough. I used milk for the soaking and used the rest of that flavored almost cereal-like tasting liquid combined with the buttermilk and some apple cider (instead of beer that I usually use or just plain water) and proceeded as usual (to see other bread recipes that are somewhat similar click here and/or here).
The result was perfect with the foie gras and on top of that, if you make smaller loaves or more than one larger loaf, you can actually freeze it after baking and cooling or even slice it up and freeze it in freezer bags and you’ll have one less thing to do for your winter holiday family & friends meals. Just defrost and toast.
Every slice looks different, like an individualized humble holiday offering, like a little treasure . . . :)