Steve Bush shares the recipe for his Crispy Poached Duck Egg with Asparagus, Peas and Goats Curd

I only enjoyed sport, art and home economics at school and was still undecided at 16 as to what career path to take. I received top marks one day for tea and toast in HE and when I got home I told my dad I wanted to be a chef. He discussed this over a pint with his mate and he said he might be able to help. He then managed to secure me a four-year apprenticeship at Shell Oil in the Strand, London with a day release at Westminster College. It was supposed to be spread over eight different kitchens with six months in each.

I ended up doing three years in the fine dining director’s kitchen with chefs from Claridges, Roux Brothers & Le Manoir! I’ve worked at the Mole & Chicken for six years and my cooking style is clean and simple modern British.

My signature dish is Pork Belly, Scallops, Apple & Black Pudding.

My favourite places to eat and drink around Oxfordshire include Thai at the Crazy Bear in Stadhampton, The Mole inn, Toot Baldon and for a special occasion Le Manoir. My favourite kind of cuisine is authentic Thai & Lebanese.


Crispy Poached Duck Egg with Asparagus, Peas and Goats Curd

This is a favourite here at the Mole & Chicken in spring when the asparagus season kicks in. A wonderful combination of textures and flavours and it’s perfect simple starter for a dinner party at home.

Serves 4

* 4 duck eggs
* Fresh white breadcrumbs
* 1 beaten egg
* Flour
* 1 bunch of jumbo asparagus
* 100gr blanched peas
* 200gr of goat’s curd
* Handful of pea shoots
* Good quality rapeseed oil

* Heat some water in a deep pan with a little distilled vinegar & salt
* One at a time, drop in the duck eggs and poach for about three minutes until firm but still soft in the centre.
* Plunge into iced water to stop them cooking further. Place on kitchen towel or paper to dry out.
* Dip them in flour, then place into the beaten egg and then into the fresh breadcrumbs and reserve.
* In some boiling salted water, blanch the asparagus for one minute and again plunge into iced water.
* Drain and cut into one inch pieces.
* Using a deep fat fryer at 180c fry the duck eggs until golden and crisp, about one minute
* With a teaspoon, arrange some goats curd in a circle on the plate.
* Then rustically arrange the asparagus, peas and peashoots over the curd to form a circle.
* Place the duck egg in the middle and drizzle the rapeseed oil over to finish.