Travelers’ Choice Restaurants represent the most delectable fine-dining venues across the globe, according to millions of traveler reviews and opinions on TripAdvisor. To celebrate the awards and inspire your next culinary adventure, we’re sharing recipes from some of this year’s winners to give you an at-home sampling before you book your reservation.
Travelers’ Choice Restaurant Winner: Maison Bleue Restaurant – Suffolk, England
““Maison Bleue is an experience that everyone should try. The food is truly excellent, the atmosphere superb and the service could not be bettered anywhere. We went there for my wife’s birthday and it is one she will remember for a long long time!”
Reviewed by TripAdvisor Traveler 569tonyp from Ipswich, England
- 3 ½ oz.(100 g) chicken breast
- 1 egg white
- ½ cup (120 ml) whipping cream
- 2 ½ ounces (70 g) Suffolk chorizo, diced
- 1 whole free-range Creedy Carver duck, deboned but with the skin left on
- 1 ½ tbsp. (20 g) shallots, finely chopped
- 5 tbsp. (70 g) butter, plus extra for pan-frying
- 3 ½ oz. (100 g) chicken livers
- 2 tsp. (10 ml) brandy
- ⅔ cup (100 grams) broad beans
- 2 tbsp. (20 grams) Girolles mushrooms
- Salt and black pepper
- 1 duck carcass
- 1 large carrot, roughly chopped
- 1 celery stalk, roughly chopped
- Leek trimmings
- 2 garlic cloves, lightly crushed
- 1 bouquet garni
- Zest of 1 orange
- 6 peppercorns
- 5 cups (1.2 l) water
- To make the ballotine, chop the chicken breast roughly and place in a food processor. Pulse until finely chopped.
- Add the egg white, a little salt and pepper.
- Blitz on full speed for 3 minutes, stopping the machine twice to scrape down the sides. While blitzing, incorporate most of the cream in a steady stream, reserving ⅛ cup (30 ml). Purée until smooth.
- Scrape the mixture into a large bowl and add the chorizo. Stir.
- Lay out the boneless legs of duck (skin-side down) on a sheet of plastic wrap. Season with salt and pepper.
- Spread out the chicken stuffing all over the meat. Roll the stuffed duck into a neat sausage shape using the plastic wrap, and twist the plastic warp at each end to tighten and seal.
- Steam in a steam oven at 140°F (60°C) for 8 hours. (You can also do this in a bain-marie in a domestic oven.)
- To make the chicken liver velouté, place the shallots and the 5 tbsp. (70 g) butter in a medium pan set over a medium heat.
- Add the livers and sauté until browned on both sides, but still medium rare; about 2 minutes on each side.
- Deglaze the pan with the brandy, scraping up the bits on the bottom of the pan. Cook just until all of the liquid has evaporated. Do not let the livers start to stick to the bottom of the pan.
- Transfer the livers and shallots into a food processor and turn it on. After the livers have been spinning for about 1 minute, slowly add the remaining cream and blend until smooth. Season to taste.
- Transfer to a bowl, cover and store in the fridge until needed.
- To cook the breasts, preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C) (fan 350°F (180°C)). Score the skin of the duck breasts with a sharp knife and season with salt and pepper.
- Place the duck breasts skin-side down in a large frying pan set over a medium heat. Color the skin, for 10 minutes, pouring off the excess fat every 2 minutes until the skin is a crispy and golden brown.
- Turn the duck on to its flesh side and sear for 1 minute to lock in the juices. Transfer to an ovenproof dish, skin-side down again, and place in the preheated oven for 4 minutes.
- Remove and allow to rest for 4 minutes before serving.
- Meanwhile, pan-fry the Girolles and broad beans with a little butter for a few minutes until cooked.
- Preheat the oven to 430°F (220°C) (fan 430°F (200°C)).
- Put the broken duck carcass, carrots, celery, leek and garlic in a flameproof roasting pan and place in the preheated oven to brown and slightly caramelize for 25 minutes.
- Place the carcass and vegetables, along with the bouquet garni, orange zest and peppercorns into a large pan.
- Put the roasting pan over a medium heat on the hob and deglaze it with a little of the water, using a wooden spoon to get off all the nice burnt bits. Add this to the pan with the rest of the water.
- Bring steadily to the boil and simmer for around 2 hours.
- Pass the stock through a fine sieve into a bowl. Season and let it cool, then skim any fat that would have risen to the top.
- Place the stock into a clean pan and bring to a simmer. Cook until it has reduced by about three-quarters.
- Plating: Spread the chicken liver velouté neatly in the middle of the four serving plates. Cut each duck leg ballotine into two pieces and place one piece over the chicken liver on each plate. Slice and arrange the duck breast evenly between the four plates, add the Girolles and broad beans and finish with the jus.
- For quality and taste, we use Creedy Carver duck, as they are grown in welfare-friendly conditions. Ask your butcher to debone the duck for you, leaving the skin on. Ask for the carcass too, which you will need for the jus. Start this recipe a day ahead.
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See the full list of 2015 Travelers’ Choice Restaurant winners at www.tripadvisor.com/TravelersChoice-Restaurants