6 boneless duck breasts (cleaned, scored and seasoned liberally with kosher salt and pepper)
3 shallots, peeled and julienned
½ cup Madeira
2 cups reduced brown stock (duck or chicken)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
½ stick unsalted butter
1 quart cooked rice (Carolina Gold or Nostrale preferred)
4 tablespoons benne seeds
24 shucked oysters
Salt and pepper
Heat a heavy skillet, such as cast iron, on low heat. Place duck breasts skin side down and allow to render slowly. When skin is crispy, turn breasts and allow them to continue cooking another 3-4 minutes; this will produce a medium doneness. Remove from heat and allow to rest before slicing.
In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, lightly caramelize the shallots. Deglaze pan with Madeira, burning off the alcohol and reducing by two-thirds. Add stock, thyme, bay leaf and reduce by half, or to a slightly thickened consistency. Whisk in butter and remove from heat.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Heat a nonstick skillet or well-greased cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add enough cooking oil (or rendered duck fat) to thinly coat the skillet, followed by ½ cup of cooked rice. Using a spatula and working quickly, mash the rice into a flat disc and continue cooking. Add a generous pinch of benne seed and season with salt and pepper. If using medium- or long-grain rice, add a dash of water to release additional rice starch. When a golden crust forms, remove from heat and repeat procedure for 6 crusts.
Arrange the crusts on a sheet tray and put them in the oven. Return sauce to a simmer and add shucked oysters. Cook for about a minute, or until edges just begin to ruffle, and remove from heat.
Slice duck breasts on the bias and plate. Spoon oyster sauce over duck. Remove warmed rice discs from oven; put one on each plate. Pair with a sauteed seasonal green.