Duck breast with savory orange sauce over braised chicory

Ok, so we got chicory (also called curly endive) in our CSA two weeks in a row. I was fairly stumped by this one – didn’t love the taste raw, and all the recipes I saw were for salads. Until I stumbled on this one.

I used this more of a guide as anything else. I didn’t have all that much duck – basically, I cut the breast off the duck that’s been languishing in the freezer for months. So I had tons of leftover sauce, and I served the breasts whole rather than sliced.

The sweetness of the sauce and richness of the duck were just enough to balance out the very bitter chicory (which still isn’t winning any awards for my favorite veggie, but it worked here). Warning – I burned the duck breast skin a little, so be careful when you’re searing it.

Breast of 1 small duck, cut off of duck and split in two

chicory, chopped (two CSA handfuls worth?)

zest of 1 orange

juice from 1 orange

1/4 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup sunflower oil

2 tbsp honey

1 tbsp champagne vinegar

dash red pepper flakes

salt and pepper

1 tbsp butter

2 garlic scapes, minced

couple splashes water

cooking spray

Put duck in plastic bag. Combine all ingredients except butter, scapes, chicory, cooking spray and water. Marinate duck in plastic bag and marinade for at least 8 hours (I did mine for 24).

Remove duck breast from bag – save marinade. Pat dry and season with salt and pepper.

Heat skillet. Sear duck breast for 5 minutes, skin side down. Remove from pan and drain fat. Add back to pan, skin side up, and cook 20 minutes. Cover and cook another 8 minutes until temperature is 145-150 degrees inside (I had to put it back in for another 5 minutes or so).

While duck is cooking, melt butter in a pot. Add scapes and sautee a minute or two. Add chicory and water and braise 8-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Remove duck from pan. Add marinade back to skillet and reduce.

Divide chicory in two. Top each plate with duck breast. Spoon some sauce over each breast and serve.


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