Hand Cured

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Roberto Leoci, owner of Leoci’s Trattoria, fashions gnocchi by hand, cures his own salami and preserves his own jam.  In the May/June issue of our magazine, he teaches us how to make duck breast proscuitto—the inspiration for this Crispy Goat and Duck Salad. Photography by Chia Chong.

Crispy Goat and Duck Salad

(Serves 4)

A play of textures, this salad is crunchy and creamy, salty, sour, sweet and hot.

One 10-ounce log of goat cheese

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Pinch of salt

1 large egg, beaten

3 cups panko bread crumbs, lightly crushed

Canola oil

8 ounces (one breast) Duck Breast Prosciutto, thinly sliced on the diagonal

4 cups fresh pea shoots, washed

12 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half

1 recipe Raspberry Jalapeno Vinaigrette (below)

Line a baking sheet with waxed paper and set aside.

Cut the goat cheese log into 12 equal pieces and roll each piece into a ball. Place goat cheese balls onto the lined baking sheet and refrigerate the cheese balls until firm, approximately 15 minutes.

In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. In a second small mixing bowl, place the beaten egg. In a third small mixing bowl, place the panko.

Working one goat cheese ball at a time, dredge each ball first in the flour mixture then dip it into the egg, and finally roll the ball in the panko until it is fully coated. Return the coated goat cheese ball to the lined baking sheet, and repeat the process until all 12 balls have been coated.  Place the baking sheet in the freezer for approximately 15 minutes, just until the goat cheese balls are firm.

Line another baking sheet with paper towels and set aside.

In a large saucepan, heat approximately two inches of canola oil to 360º F.  Remove the goat cheese balls from the freezer.  Working in batches, fry the goat cheese balls until they turn golden brown and crisp, approximately 2 to 3 minutes and turning occasionally. Using a slotted spoon or spider skimmer, transfer the fried goat cheese balls to the paper towel-lined baking sheet to drain.

To assemble the salad: Divide the duck prosciutto, pea shoots, tomatoes and goat cheese balls evenly between four plates or one large platter, and decoratively arrange. Drizzle the salad with Raspberry Jalapeno Vinaigrette.

Raspberry Jalapeno Vinaigrette

(Yields about 1/3 cup)

 2 tablespoons Leoci’s Raspberry Jalapeno Jam®

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons balsamic glaze or balsamic vinegar


Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the jam, olive oil and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper then drizzle over the Crispy Goat and Duck Salad.

Behind the Scenes: Portrait of an Artisan

Video: Juwan Platt

Music: Soles of Fire (Chauffer) by Theophilus London