Seared Duck Breast | Recipe | Oven-Finished Duck Breast

Eastern Long Island is known for its duck farms and many wonderful duck dishes.  Have you ever had Long Island duck?  It's a tender, succulent bird.  The story goes that an American business man brought back white pekins from China to Long Island.  Only a handful survived, but reproduced quickly.  And ever since then, Long Island has been duck farming and the white pekins are now known as Long Island ducks.

I wish I had Long Island duck to serve at our party, but I wasn't able to find any in Cleveland.  Long Island duck or not, any duck cooked well will be tender and moist with a wonderful flavor.  The key to a good duck breast is to cook it slowly on the fat side.  And this may sound odd, but place the duck in a room temperature pan and then turn on the heat.  If you add duck to a hot pan, it's harder to render the fat.  And don't throw out that fat!  Store the fat in the refrigerator and use it when cooking potatoes for an extra-special treat.

I've tried cooking duck several different ways with a variety of ingredients and I found that only sea salt and black pepper are needed to best season this bird.  Serve along with some sauce, such as a pomegranate-blueberry sauce, for a complementary flavor.

Seared Duck Breast Recipe
Yields: 6 servings

3 duck breasts (6 halves, figure about 1/2 breast per person)
sea salt

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Score fat diagonally in 1/4" intervals taking care not to cut the meat.  If any sinews remain on the meat side, cut them off.
2. Season both sides of duck breast with salt and pepper.  Let stand at room temperature 10-15 before cooking.
3. Place duck breasts skin side down in a room temperature oven-proof pan.  Turn heat up to Medium-Low and let fat render for 10-15 minutes until skin is golden-crisp.
4. Turn up heat to Medium-High, flip duck breast to meat side and sear for 30 seconds.  Remove from heat.
5. Pour duck fat into a glass container (see note above).  Flip breast back to fat side down and place pan in the oven for 6-8 minutes for medium-rare.
6. Transfer breast to a cutting board and let stand for 5 minutes.  Slice at a diagonal, not too thin otherwise meat will become cold quickly.  Plate and serve.


Miss T said... [Reply]

Duck is my most favourite thing ever! maybe because I dont have it very often. Long Island duck? yes please - with a Long Island Iced Tea - PARTY!
(wheres le petite france disappeared too?)
T x

Pattie @ Olla-Podrida said... [Reply]

How elegant! It seems we've both been in a rather elegant cooking mode.