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Leg of capon stuffed with dried fruit

and pomegranate reduction


- Capon leg, boneless
- Chicken sausage
- Fig and dried apricots, dates
- Celery, carrots, onions and herbs
- Pomegranate
- Turnip tops
- Mashed potatoes

The capon is a typical Christmas meat, appreciated for being very tender. Capon represents for Italy what turkey does to United States of America, it is not unusual, infact, to find the whole stuffed capon on Italian tables at Christmas, as well as you’ll find turkey on the other side of the Atlantic. Today's recipe, however, will consider only one part of the capon: the leg. It is presented as always by Danilo Bortolin, Chef of Restaurant "La Beola" at Grand Hotel Majestic in Pallanza, he hosted us in his home kitchen for the occasion.

Danilo Bortolin – Chef at Ristorante La Beola at Grand Hotel Majestic:
Let's start with the stuffing. In a bowl we mix gutless chicken sausage, which is much easier to work with than the pork one, and all the nuts we previously diced. No need to add salt or flavors, just a hint of pepper if you like.

I now take the boneless leg, open it and fill it with the stuffing just prepared, then close it and tie it with string just like you would do with roast, mind non to tight it too much so as not to get out of the filling. Then you can lay the capon in the pan with vegetables cut in pieces, herbs of your choice and a bit of butter, bake at 160°C for 40 minutes, occasionally basting with dry white wine.
When the leg is cook I take it out of the oven and let it rest for a few minutes while I prepare the sides.
We can stir fry the turnip greens in one tablespoon of Extra Virgin Olive Oil and a pinch of salt, I choose this vegetable for its bitter taste which is a great combination for the capon with fruits’ sweetness and also because I tend to use seasonal veggies and fruits. Meanwhile I can also prepare the pomegranate’s reduction by simply cooking the squeezed juice of a pomegranate at low heat until it get thicker.

It’s now time to prepare our plate.
Untie the capon’s leg and cut into medallions, then settle it into the dish just next the mashed potato’s quenelle, you can prepare the mashed according to your favorite recipe, settle turnip greens where you best like it and drop a few dots of pomegranate reduction that will give acidity to the preparation as well as a nice color contrast.
It’s indeed a very tasty recipe, beautiful to look at nonetheless, it looks marvelous on Holidays rich and decorated tables. It is not a difficult preparation as long as the ingredients are top quality and fresh.
I wish everyone a Merry Christmas, and see you in spring with the reopening of Restaurant "La Beola" at Grand Hotel Majestic in Pallanza.