Pan-fried Duck Breast with Duck Sausage, this is another favourite at theSecretGarden-France cooking school. The recipe below has all the details for this fantastic key element to any main meal you are preparing for that intimate dinner or dinner party.
Take the time to collect all the ingredients so you can enjoy the making of this meal as well as the eating later.
Ingredients4 duck breasts 2 duck legs 300g pork mince 2 tsp cognac 1 tsp finely grated lemon zest 1 glass of good red wine 300 ml chicken stock 500 ml good rich duck stock 3 dsp balsamic vinegar 5 tbsp cherry jam Extra virgin olive oil, to serve
Preheat oven to 220°C.
Place the stocks, wine, vinegar into a roomy saucepan and bring to the boil to reduce, allow it to simmer for 10 mins then add the cherry jam, allow to continue to simmer until you reduced by half, check for seasoning, and add salt only. The sauce should be slightly sticky.
Remove the skin from both legs and discard. Cut the meat from the leg bones, and roughly chop. Place chopped leg meat into a food processor and pulse until smooth. Transfer mixture to a bowl add pork mince, pistachios, cognac and lemon zest. Season well with salt and pepper. Put the mixture in the fridge until ready to use.
Put the duck breast on a board and check for any excess skin or feathers, remove the skin and feathers and then turn over and look for any sinew (white skin) remove this too as it will be tough once cooked. Lightly score skin of each duck breast in a lattice pattern, don’t go through to the meat, and sprinkle each side with salt and freshly ground black pepper, leave on a plate in a cool place until ready to cook. If you need to put the duck breast back in the fridge, remove 1 hr before you are ready to cook to bring back to room temperature.
To make the sausages, take some cling film and place a double layer onto a cutting board, take the mixture out of the fridge and take handfuls of the mixture and shape into sausages, place the sausage in the centre of the cling film and wrap the film tightly around the mixture, twisting the ends to ensure that there is no air inside the wrap and no water will get in, if need be, take another piece of cling film and wrap the sausage again. Continue until you have used all the mixture.
Bring a large pan of water to the boil, and turn down to a rolling simmer, poach the sausages for 30 mins until cooked. You might need to place a spoon on top of the sausages to ensure they are fully immersed in the water, try to turn them half way through the cooking to ensure they are cooked all the way around. After 30 mins, take the sausages out of the water and place on a plate to cool down, this can be done ahead of time (even the day before), then remove the cling film and let the fat run off.
When you are ready to bring all the elements together, bring a frying pan to a medium-high heat there is no need for any oil.(Honest) Place the breasts skin side down first as this will release some of the fat, and cook for 2-3 mins until it is starting to crisp, then flip them on to the flesh side and cook for 2-3 mins until you have a nice golden brown colour, flip back over onto the skin and continue to cook for about 6-8 mins, by which time the skin will be golden brown and crisp, and the pan will have filled with a veritable lake of duck fat.
Remove the breast to a baking tray lined with tea towels and grease proof paper, place the breasts on the paper and wrap with foil and as many tea towels as you can spare, place in the oven a the lowest setting and leave alone for at least 10 minutes and upto 30 minutes it will depend on the thickness of the breasts, this resting is essential as it allows the cooking process to finish and the meat to relax.
While the duck breast is resting, pour most of the duck fat out of the frying pan, and take the duck sausage and fry gently until golden brown on all sides, you are also heating the meat at this stage too, so this will depend on whether you have made the sausage ahead or not. Place on a baking tray in the oven, with the breasts.
Put the cherry sauce back over a low heat ready to plate up.
Cut each breast in to 5 slices and serve fanned out on four warmed serving plates. Add 2-3 slices of the duck sausage and your chosen veg, then pour the sauce around.
We really enjoy this meal and I hope you enjoy it too.
Note : Vegetables that I serve with this is roast potatoes or potato dauphinoise, pan onions, roast beetroots, this is your choice.