Barded Thrush Breasts with Smooth Olive Polenta

Credit: Didier Loire


Step 1: Thrushes

Pluck, singe, dress and draw the thrushes. Set the giblets aside.

Cut away the legs from the thrushes. Trim the breasts, and season with salt and pepper. Wrap each breast in a thin slice of bacon, and slide onto wooden skewers, four to a skewer. Prick the ends with sprigs of rosemary.

Begin cooking over an open flame. Cook for 7-8 minutes over a medium heat, turning over when cooked through half way. When golden brown, place in a dish, and keep warm, covered with a sheet of aluminum foil.

Step 2: Polenta

Bring the water to a boil, and pour some olive oil into it. Add the cornmeal, making sure to sprinkle it over the water. Stir first with a whisk, and then, once the mixture thickens, with a spatula.

Cover and cook over a low heat for 45 minutes.

When cooked, blend in the butter and mascarpone, then add the grated parmesan. The polenta must be soft, smooth and very flavorful.

Bring some water to a boil in a pan. Plunge the olives into it and blanch for 3 minutes, then rinse under cold water and drain.

Cut the bacon 1/5 inch (5 mm) pieces.

Heat some oil in a cast iron pot. Add the butter and, when melted, add the bacon and the halved garlic.

Brown very slightly for about 3 minutes, stirring constantly with a spatula. Add the thrush jus and the chopped rosemary. Bring to the desired consistency, then remove the cloves of garlic and add the olives.

Step 3: Plating

Spoon the polenta onto the serving plates. Place the thrush skewers on top of the polenta and coat everything with the cooking juices.

Add the bacon, olives, and porcini mushroom shavings. Serve immediately.

This recipe was originally published in "Culinary Encyclopedia by Alain Ducasse" (Éditions Alain Ducasse). See all credits

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