With restaurants in the City and near Victoria, M Restaurants has launched a brand-new menu, spearheaded by Culinary Director Mike Reid. With a prominent international spin, the new menu takes inspiration from some of the world’s finest foods and ingredients, celebrating exciting flavours plus a blend of traditional cooking methods and innovative technology to elevate each dish with a focus on theatrical dining. Dishes are split into sections such as ‘Ice’, ‘Smoke’, ‘Coal’, and ‘Wood’, including highlights such as this crown of duck, served with a pine needle jus.
Opened in 2014, M Restaurants’ Threadneedle Street branch was the first of the two restaurant openings, followed by a multifaceted venue on Victoria Street. Founded by Martin Williams and Chef Michael Reid, M Restaurants joined with Gaucho restaurants in 2019, now both led by CEO Martin Williams.
An impressive dish ideal for dinner parties, or even as a Christmas turkey alternative, this crown of duck recipe requires a fair amount of attention, but it’s far simpler to prepare than the lengthy recipe suggests. Once simmered for five hours, the duck jus is spiked with pine needles (or cherries can be used if pine needles are unavailable) and poured over the slow-roasted duck that’s finished in a hot pan and basted with duck fat.
- Vacuum bag or heat-proof zip-lock bag
- 1 duck crown
- 10 g fresh rosemary
- 5 g fresh thyme
- 1 head fresh garlic whole
- 10 g fresh bay leaf
- 200 ml orange juice
- 500 ml duck fat
- 10 g pine needles optional
- 2 g Maldon salt
- 100 g pine needles for garnish
- 60 ml pine needle jus recipe below
For the pine needle jus
- 500 ml duck jus recipe below
- 50 g pine needles optional, could replace with cherries
- 255 ml water
For the duck jus
- 500 g duck bones
- 110 g celery
- 150 g leeks
- 150 g carrots
- 370 g Spanish onions
- 15 g whole garlic
- 5 g fresh rosemary
- 5 g fresh thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 stick lemongrass
- 70 g spring onion
- 240 g tomatoes cut into quarters
- 25 ml rapeseed oil
- 4 litres water
- 500 ml red wine
- Begin by making the duck jus. Chop the bones into even pieces and roast in a very hot oven until golden brown.
- Meanwhile, peel and roughly chop the carrots, onions, celery, leeks, garlic, lemongrass and spring onions.
- Heat the rapeseed oil in a large pan and add the vegetables and herbs. Cook until lightly caramelised.
- Once caramelised, add the wine and tomatoes and bring to the boil.
- Add the roasted bones to vegetables, discard the fat and deglaze the roasting tray with a little hot water and add this to the main pot.
- Add 4 litres of water and bring to a simmer. Make sure you skim the stock while cooking.
- Cook for 5-7 hours at a low heat.
- Pass the stock through a fine sieve and then reduce. Pass off again and cool down.
- To prepare the duck, in the final 90 minutes of cooking the jus, stuff the crown with the rosemary, thyme, garlic, bay leaves, and orange juice, then transfer to a vacuum bag with the duck fat.
- Slow roast in the oven for around 90 minutes at 160C/Gas 3.
- Remove from the oven and transfer the crown to a pan and sear each breast for 6 minutes.
- Then place the crown on its spine and baste in the duck fat cooking liquor.
- Meanwhile, add 500ml water to the duck just and the pine needles or cherries and reduce down to your desired consistency.
- Serve on a bed on pine needles and cindering apple wood chunks (if available) with the pine needle jus.