R5 Thanksgiving Recipes from Bedford Post Inn

They insist there’s nothing better than homemade. You disagree; surely Jeremy McMillan, chef at the rave-inspiring Bedford Post, can whip up something that home chefs can only dream of. No need to debate. Please both sides by trying out these three Thanksgiving recipes, which Chef McMillan put together especially for westchestermagazine.com readers.

Roast Duck with Apple Brandy Mustard

“This duck dish is a great alternative for those of us who are tired of serving turkey each year. It comes out caramelized, salty, and sweet.”

Roast Duck
(Serves 5-6)

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2 Muscovy or Long Island ducks, cleaned, rinsed, and patted dry
2 sliced oranges
1 head of garlic, cut in half
¼ cup rosemary
Apple brandy mustard (see recipe below)

1. Preheat oven to 250° F degrees
2. Stuff each duck with half of the sliced orange, half of the head of garlic, and half of the rosemary
3. Lightly brush skin of each duck with some of the the apple brandy mustard (recipe below); reserve the rest
4. Place ducks in a roasting pan and into preheated oven
5. Brush with apple mustard every 30 minutes
6. Roast slowly until a fork twists easily when inserted into the leg meat (approximately 3 hours). The meat should be very tender; if the fork is hard to turn in the leg meat, it’s not yet completely cooked.
7. Let rest 15 minutes; then carve as you would a turkey

Apple Brandy Mustard
3 cups (enough for 2 large ducks)

¼ of a large onion 
3 Granny Smith apples
1/3 cup cider vinegar
¼ cup brandy or cognac
¼ cup soy sauce
2 Tbsp sesame oil
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 Tbsp grain mustard
½ tsp sugar
½ tsp chili flakes
½ tsp ground nutmeg
½ tsp ground white pepper
1 tsp minced garlic
1 inch ginger root
¼ tsp prepared white horseradish
¼ cup orange juice

1. With a box grater or a food processor, grate onion, apple, ginger, and garlic
2. In a metal or glass bowl, add processed mixture, then add remaining ingredients, whisking to combine
3. Let rest 20-30 minutes

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Macaroni and Cheese

(Serves 4)

“At my house, there isn’t a family meal without macaroni and cheese, the definition of comfort food.”

1 qt heavy cream
béchamel sauce (see recipe below)
16 oz macaroni, cooked and cooled
1 lb cheddar cheese, grated 8 oz grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
salt and pepper to taste

1. In a medium sauce pot or large sauté pan, heat cream over medium heat, until it comes to a boil
2. Stir béchamel sauce into cream
3. Add cooked noodles, season to taste with salt and pepper, and heat until noodles are hot (approximately 2-3 minutes)
4. Add cheddar cheese and mix through; then pour into an 8” x 8”, un-greased, ovenproof baking dish (8″x8″)
5. Top with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, gratin under a broiler until cheese is browned (approximately 3-4 minutes)

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Béchamel Sauce
(Makes 24 ounces)

4 oz unsalted butter 
4 oz all-purpose flour
1 qt whole milk
½ tsp nutmeg, freshly grated
pinch black pepper, freshly ground
1 sprig thyme
1 bay leaf, torn in half 

1. Melt butter in medium sauce pot
2. With a wooden spoon, stir flour into melted butter and continue to stir over low heat until a blond roux is formed (until flour doesn’t taste raw anymore; approximately 4-5 minutes)
3. Whisk milk into roux, increase heat to medium/high, making sure to keep flour mixture from sticking to bottom of pot
4. While whisking milk, add remaining ingredients. Continue to whisk until mixture comes to a boil, then turn off the heat and cool. (Will keep in the refrigerator 1 week, covered.)


Squash and Brussels Sprout Spaetzle

“This spaetlze dish can seem a little intimidating, but when the house is full of family and the stress of the holidays, and you need something to relieve some stress, why not slap a little dough around?”

(Serves 6-8)

14 oz all-purpose flour
6 eggs
pinch salt
pinch nutmeg

1. Combine flour with all ingredients in a mixing bowl
2. Using your hand like a whisk, mix roughly, pulling away from the bowl and then slapping back against the side of the bowl to work the gluten
3. Continue “slapping” the dough until it becomes elastic and small bubbles begin to form 4. Let rest 5 minutes
5. Pour batter into a colander fitted over a pot of boiling and salted water, push through holes with a spatula and boil until the pieces begin to float
6. Skim spaetzle out of water and dip into ice water to cool (2-3 minutes)
7. Drain from ice bath onto a towel and let dry

Squash and Brussels Sprout Spaetzle
(Serves 6-8)

1 cup spaetzle, cooked and drained
1 cup butternut squash, diced
½ lb Brussels sprouts, cut in half, leaves pulled apart
½ cup fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated
1 Tbsp fresh sage, chopped
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 tsp salt 

1. In a large sauté pan, melt butter over medium-high heat
2. Carefully add cooked and dried spaetzle to pan; let sit in an even layer to sear and caramelize
3. When spaetzle has browned on one side, stir, add diced squash, and season with salt
4. Cook 2 minutes, until spaetzle has browned completely
5. Add in Brussels sprout leaves and sage; toss several times to mix, then remove from heat
6. Plate and finish with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

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