13 June 2011

David's Birthday Duck

David's favorite meal being duck, I bought two duck breasts on impulse last week and stashed them in the freezer without an actual meal plan.

Some research found me the following recipe: http://allrecipes.com.au/recipe/12162/spiced-duck-breasts.aspx which I liked for being spicy and NOT sweet.  It is tedious how many duck recipes involve fruit sauce.  Not that I dislike duck with fruit sauce, but other options are very welcome.

I didn't quite follow the recipe, so here is my version:
(1) For baharat spice rub, I substituted a mixture of Cajun spice mix and ras-el-hanout (because I already had some of each made, and didn't want to make another spice mix), plus I added some Chinese five spice.
(2) Rather than cut slits in the duck skin, I loosened it over each duck breast while keeping it attached on the side.  I rubbed the spice into this cavity and all over the outside as well.
(3) As per the recipe, I cooked it over medium heat, skin side down first, until the fat had rendered, then on the other side.  I didn't really time it and was worried that it would be overcooked, but the spice rub protected it and it actually came out perfectly.
(4) Rather than the sweet potato mash in the recipe I made Tunisian carrot salad and served it warm, as well as garlic mashed potatoes and steamed broccoli.  I kind of modified the carrot salad recipe as well, by using coriander paste (rather than fresh chopped) and lemon juice (rather than vinegar).  The carrots went really well with the duck.  So did the Riesling!

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