For the poblano chili-chocolate sauce:
2 Tb. sliced shallots
1 Tb. butter
3 poblano chili peppers, roasted, peeled, seeded and chopped
¼ C. port wine
1 sachet containing 2 Tb. toasted cumin seeds*
2 C. chicken stock
½ C. veal stock, optional
¼ C. heavy cream
1 Tb. semi-sweet or bitter-sweet chocolate, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
* Make sachet by placing spices in a square of cheesecloth and tying it with twine.
For the duck breasts:
2 Moulard duck breasts, cut in half
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper
To make the sauce: Cook the shallots in the butter until translucent. Add the poblano peppers and toss with the shallots. Add the port wine and reduce by half or until all the alcohol has evaporated.
Toss in the sachet and chicken stock. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and simmer for 45 minutes. Add the veal stock (if you have it) and cook an additional 15 minutes. This gives the sauce a bit more body.
Remove the sachet from the sauce and place the ingredients in a blender. Blend until liquefied. Depending on the blender, you may want to strain sauce.
Place sauce back in sauce pan and add the cream. You may need more stock to thin out the sauce. Add the chocolate and whisk until well blended. Season to taste with the salt and pepper. Can be made 3 days in advance and kept refrigerated.
To make the duck breasts: Place duck breast skin side down in sauté pan, over low heat cook to render as much fat as possible. Turn breast to lightly brown the meat side of the duck breast.
Remove duck breast from pan and place in very hot oven (415° or above) to finish cooking. Do not cook beyond medium rare.
To serve: If you made the sauce in advance, pour some of the sauce into a sauté pan and heat. Adjust salt and pepper if necessary. You may also need to adjust the thickness by adding cream or stock. Spoon sauce on to heated plate. You will have leftover sauce. Says Chef Trevisani, “At the restaurant, I present this dish by cutting the portion in half and arranging the two pieces of the breast, one standing up next to the other. You can slice the breast and fan the slices if you like or leave the breast as is and serve it on the sauce. I prefer seeing the color of the meat in contrast with the sauce.”