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49: Foie Gras at Cosmos

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You almost can't do wrong to it: sweetly lush, like pate but without the attendant liverwurst game, like butter meets fruit on a bolt of silk.

There is a reason foie gras maintains its reputation as a delicacy worldwide, despite whatever fate detractors may wish for it. Because it's good. Really good, and there's nothing in the known universe to substitute for it.

See also: 50: The Delmonico Steak at Capital Grille

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We tend to think there isn't much that can elevate foie gras. Smear it on brioche with a swipe of orange marmalade and then drift off into a butterscotch-colored cloud of primal euphoria.

But new Cosmos chef Tim Fischer uses all of the tools in his repertoire (including sous vide and an ocean of Sauternes for the lobes to bathe in) to boost the idolized commodity into new latitudes.

Classic buttery brioche provides a base, but then in a nod to his roots (he's a Minnesota kid) he adds lingonberry gel, an additional umami blast of caramelized onions, some playful crunch from candied walnuts, and then blasts it all with a magician's gun that pulverizes foie fat and shoots powdered foie like a broken snowball upon a rosy cheek. A tweezered garnish of springy chervil is a kiss upon the forehead.

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