Smorgasburg was so awesome not just because of the food I got to eat there, but because of what I got to take home! I took home two lovely duck breasts from Hudson Valley Duck Farm’s stand. Ms. H was coming into town so I decided to make magic.
Yup, that’s magic. I was very excited to make the duck so I searched high and low for a recipe that was to my liking. As always, my Epicurious app came up with this amazing recipe for Seared Duck Breast with Chili, Honey & Ginger Glaze.
2 whole magret duck breasts, approximately 1 pound each, available from specialty meat markets
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 small dried ancho chili pepper soaked in 1 cup boiling water for 30 minutes (I couldn’t find ancho chilis so I used a Jamaican hot pepper)
1 small white onion, finely chopped
1 tablespoon grated ginger
2 tablespoons warm honey dissolved in ½ cup port wine
2 scallions, chopped, about 1/2 cup
With the point of a knife, score the skin side of the breasts in crosshatch pattern, being careful not to pierce the flesh of the meat.
Season the duck breasts with salt and pepper. Heat a sauté pan over medium heat for 1 minute before adding the breasts, skin side down. Cook skin side down over medium to low heat, for approximately 10 to 12 minutes to render the fat from the skin before turning the breasts over.
When the duck has rendered its fat and the skin has taken on a crisp exterior quality turn the breasts over and sauté the flesh side for 3 to 4 minutes. Duck is reeeeallly fatty! I used the reserved duck fat to make asparagus and also mixed it in with the mashed potatoes :-)
Carefully remove the duck from the pan, place on a platter to keep warm. Place the chili into a blender and begin to pureé, adding as much of the reserved liquid as necessary to create a smooth and thin paste-like texture. After removing the duck breasts from the pan add the onion to the still hot pan and return to the heat. Add a tablespoon or two of reserved duck fat. Sauté the onion briefly before adding the ginger and 2 tablespoons of the chili paste. Add the honey and port to the ginger chili, stir to combine and cook for one minute.
The breasts have rested for several minutes and should now be medium rare. They can be sliced lengthwise or cross-wise and several slices placed on each plate. Drizzle the warm glaze over the duck or for more impact, brush some on the duck breasts before slicing, run the duck under a hot broiler for 1 minute, caramelize the glaze and then slice and drizzle.
Oheemmgeee! The duck was amazing! I served it with asparagus and mashed potatoes. I definitely will be trying this recipe again. I must say that one duck breast was plenty for two, but being the glutton that I am, I had no problem eating more.