Pacific Palate with Don Genova

As heard on CBC Radio
My Classes
My Podcast
My Archives
About Me
My Blog
Contact Me

Past Food For Thought

Past Pacific Palate

Past So Much On My Plate

Past Recipes and Recommendations

2005 Shows
2004 Shows
2003 Shows
2002 Shows

Van Dusen Recipes

Warm Goat Cheese Salad with Don's Duqqa
(Makes 4 servings)

You can take this salad in many different directions just by varying the salad ingredients according to what's good and fresh when you're making it. Because I developed this recipe in late spring, I've used fava beans and garlic scapes to garnish the salad.


For the goat cheese:

For the salad:

  • 6 cups firm salad greens, such as frisee or curly endive
  • 1 cup fresh fava beans, blanched, refreshed in cold water and peeled (can substitute fresh green beans, cut into smallish lengths and blanched
  • 2 garlic scapes, finely chopped (scapes are the tops of garlic plants which are chopped off in the spring to allow for better underground development of the bulbs) You can substitute chopped green onions

Toss all the salad ingredients together with some olive oil, sherry vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Divide onto 4 plates, saving some of the fava beans to scatter around the edge of the salad for garnish. (they should be a nice, bright green when blanched and peeled)

For the goat cheese:
In a small bowl, beat the egg, add the goat cheese and blend until smooth. Then add the duqqa and stir until it reaches a uniform consistency. Cover the bowl and place in the fridge for 15 or 20 minutes to allow the cheese to set a bit. Heat a non-stick frypan, and add in a thin layer of olive oil. When the oil is hot, divide the cheese mixture into 4 dollops and gently fry in the pan until browned on both sides. Slide each cake of the goat cheese on top of the salad and serve immediately.

BC Strawberries and Brie French Toast
(Makes 8 servings)

From the Fraser Valley Strawberry Growers Association, www.bcstrawberries.com


  • ¾ cup (175 mL) whole milk
  • 5 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 tsp. (5 mL) vanilla
  • ¼ tsp (1mL) cinnamon
  • pinch of cardamom
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) sugar
  • 8 slices French bread, 1 ½ inches (3.5 cm) thick
  • 300g brie cheese, sliced
  • 3 ¼ cups (875 mL) BC Strawberries, sliced
  • ¼ cup (50 mL) butter
  • icing sugar
  • maple syrup

In large bowl, beat together milk, eggs, vanilla, cinnamon, cardamom and sugar. Cut slices of bread horizontally to form a pocket. Set aside 1 cup of sliced strawberries for garnish. Place slices of brie and strawberries in pocket, press down lightly. Dip bread slices in egg mixture, turn to coat each side. Place bread slices on a cookie sheet, cover and chill for 20 minutes.

In large frying pan melt butter over medium heat. Add bread slices, cook each side about 2 minutes or until golden and cheese starts to melt. Remove from pan, dust with icing sugar and garnish with strawberries. Serve immediately with maple syrup.

Duck Breasts with Blackberry-Chocolate Sauce
(Makes 4 servings)

By Don Genova and Dana Zaruba

I have to give credit for the sauce part of this recipe to Dana, who whipped it up one night in a flurry of creativity with delicious results!


  • 4 boneless duck breasts
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 cups fresh or frozen blackberries
  • 1/8 cup water
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp. cold butter, cut into cubes
  • 1 ounce orange liqueur such as Cointreau or Triple Sec (optional)
  • 1 tbsp. semi-sweet dark chocolate, roughly chopped

For the sauce:
Put the blackberries, sugar and water in a heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, and simmer until the berries have completely broken down. Remove from heat and let cool for a few minutes. Strain the berry mixture into a bowl to remove all the seeds, then return the juice to the pot. Add the balsamic vinegar, the cinnamon and the orange liqueur and simmer over medium heat until reduced by half. Remove from heat, and whisk in the chocolate a little at a time. Then whisk in the butter a half-tablespoon at a time until fully incorporated. Add salt and pepper to taste. Keep warm while you prepare the duck breasts.

Pre-heat oven to 450F, and heat until very hot a cast-iron or oven-safe heavy-bottomed frypan large enough to hold the breasts in one layer. With a sharp knife, score the skin of each duck breast, without cutting through to the flesh, in a diamond-shaped pattern. Season the breasts all over with salt and pepper and lay them skin side down in the frypan. When the skin has become crisp and golden and the fat has rendered out of it, remove the duck to a plate and carefully drain most of the fat from the pan. Put the duck breasts back in, skin side up, and roast in the oven for about 5-7 minutes for medium-rare. Remove from the pan and tent with foil and let rest for a few minutes.

Place each breast on individual plates and pour a little pool of sauce around it. This would go well with some sautéed pea tips and some steamed couscous.

<< Back

Pacific Palate with Don Genova

My Classes
My Podcast
My Archives
About Us
My Blog
Contact Us

Reproduction of this web site and its content, in whole or in part, is strictly prohibited without the express written permission of Don Genova and Pacific Palate. © Don Genova and Pacific Palate Enterprises 2008.