Pan-fried Duck Breast, Black Pudding Mashed Potato, Red Wine Jus

IMG_0130I love duck breast. So rich and gamey. This is one of what I’d like to think is many things that I have inherited from my grandmother. She loves duck too. Any time I have been dining out with her and duck has been on the menu she would always say jokingly, though a little menacingly “I think I’ll have the quack quack” or “I can’t refuse the quack quack.”

She recently, at 101 year of age, had a really nasty fall and broke an arm. This knocked a whole lot out of her and hasn’t been eating much due to the morphine so I promised her that once she would regain her appetite “I’ll cook you the quack quack.” She always got a good laugh out of this and recently she has regained her appetite so I had to follow through with something special that she would enjoy.

Potatoes are mandatory for her being Irish and of a certain age and I thought that incorporating lovely locally produced black pudding, or blood pudding, would not only suit her but would also compliment the duck. I made a really easy, sweet and fruity red wine reduction that brought the whole thing together.

This was such a nice dinner though a bit on the rich side so I wouldn’t recommend having it too often but for special occasions I really think you should go for it! I’m finding myself looking for anything to celebrate now just for an excuse to have this amazing duck again. My little nephew is visiting at the moment and yesterday he turned 7 months. I feel that was a missed opportunity.

Pan-fried Duck Breast, Black Pudding Mashed Potato, Red Wine Jus

Ingredients

  • 2 duck breasts
  • For the Mash:
  • 2 potatoes
  • 70 g black pudding
  • 25 g butter
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • 60 ml milk
  • For the Jus:
  • 1 red onion
  • 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • A glass of red wine
  • 1 tbsp gooseberry jam
  • 400 ml beef stock
  • 1 tsp flour
  • A spring onion
  • Rocket leaves

Instructions

  1. Cook the black pudding in a dry frying pan until black and crumbly. Set aside.
  2. Boil the potatoes until soft and strain.
  3. Crumble in the black pudding and mash to combine.
  4. Mix in the butter and the nutmeg and set aside.
  5. Fry the chopped onion in the same pan that you used for the black pudding until lightly softened.
  6. Add the vinegar and allow to reduce slightly.
  7. Add the wine, the jam and the beef stock, mix to combine, bring to the boil and set aside.
  8. With a sharp knife, score the fat on the duck breasts.
  9. Season with salt on both sides.
  10. Place them on a cold pan, fat side down and slowly and gradually bring the heat up to medium. This should take 15 minutes.
  11. Do not move or touch them during this time except when spooning out the rendered fat and setting aside.
  12. After 15 minutes, turn the breasts and cook on medium-high heat for another 4 minutes before removing and allowing to rest.
  13. Pour off all the out of the pan leaving the gnarled golden bits.
  14. Whisk in a teaspoon of flour before adding the jus, whisking to combine until thick and glossy.
  15. Taste and adjust for seasoning.
  16. Return the mash to the heat, add the milk and mash in.
  17. Taste and adjust for seasoning.
  18. To plate up, spoon out the mash and add the sliced, rested duck. Spoon over the jus and garnish with spring onion and rocket leaves.
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