Tuesday 14 October 2008

Recipe - Crispy Duck Breast

To duck or not to duck is not really a question. Duck, cooked correctly, is a very nice dish. It could be simple duck breast like this or some out of this world French version that takes hours, if not days, to prepare and cook.

I still haven't cooked a whole duck, but that day is coming. In the meantime you'll have to do with my way of cooking duck breasts.

I served this with some pan fried potatoes and lardons, creamy leek and some balsamic glaze. Some days, when I can be bothered, I use the pan juices to make something like a cherry and red wine reduction to go with the breasts. You can freestyle your way of serving duck breasts quite a lot. Serve it with potato mash, noodles or why not in a soup?

Ingredients (serves 1)
1 duck breast, skin on
Chinese five spice

Heat the oven to 200c.

Score the skin of the duck breasts in a criss-cross pattern with a sharp knife. Season with the Chinese five spice, salt and pepper. Rub the spices into the skin and make sure to get some into the scores.

Heat up a ovenproof frying pan (or a roasting tray) on a low-medium heat. Pop in the duck breast, skin side down, and let it slowly fry for 10 - 12 minutes. Make sure to be patient and don't rush things at this stage, this is where you lay the ground for the crispy skin.

When the time is up, pour off the excess fat from the pan. Turn the breast skin side up and put the pan into the oven for about 6 - 8 minutes. Leave it longer for a more cooked result or if the breasts are of the thicker variety.

Take the pan out of the oven and let the breast rest for about 5 minutes. This is very important when you cook duck breasts since they leak quite a lot of fluid after coming out of the oven and most people don't like the look of that. Even worse, it destroys the look of your plating efforts! ;)

Serve with your choice of accompaniments.



  1. Duck...five spice powder...what's more to life? I love it!


  2. Thanks man! It's simple, yet delicious. Can't really go wrong....

  3. I've made Peking duck...but have never attempted just a duck breast. I have to admit that your way looks much easier and less time consuming. After my next trip to the Asian market to pick up incredibly cheap duck I am going to try it your way. :-)

  4. Michele,

    It's quite easy and it turns out really nice. I'm glad I managed to inspire you!

    // Mike

  5. basicaly taken from http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/database/reallycrispyduckbrea_67879.shtml so hardly origional:(

  6. Posting as Anonymous. Hardly courageous. But thanks for taking the time to post! ;)

    // Mike

  7. Finally! I good, simple, tasty recipe for duck breast! Thank you so much, guess what I'll be cooking this Christmas =) I want to just throw food into the oven at christmas and wait to enjoy it rather than spend all of christmas in the kitchen and too tired to enjoy the festivities

  8. Akaasia,

    Thanks for your kind words. I really hope it turns out ok for you when you try to cook it. I'd love to hear how it goes.

    // Mike

  9. We had delicious, crispy, tasty duck breast for christmas dinner, thank you so much =) and cooking juices made a lovely sauce with some red wine and pomegranate juice... I cooked two extra just so we could have some leftovers

  10. Akaasia,

    I'm so happy to hear that it turned out ok. It's always great to get comments like this from people who tries the recipes and likes them.

    I hope you had a great Christmas and I wish you a very Happy New Year!

    // Mike


Please leave a comment. Positive or negative - all comments are welcome and useful. I do enjoy hearing what you think of my posts, what is good and what needs improving so please post away.

// Mike