Caramelized Duck Breasts with Pinot Noir Grapes
This slightly sweet and tangy duck breast dish takes advantage of the health benefits and deliciousness of red grapes. Active cooking time is fairly quick and needs your attention so have your ingredients ready before you start to sauté the duck breasts. Wine grapes, or other thick-skinned grapes like Concord, add a bit more complexity to the dish. If you can’t find them, seedless red or black grapes will work just fine.
Serves 6 to 8Print this recipe
2 1 lb whole Mucsovy Duck breast
Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
2 cups Pinot Noir grapes
2 tablespoons minced shallots
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, rich and slightly sweet
1 cup rich chicken stock
1. Trim the excess fat from the edges of the duck breast. Score the skin in a diamond pattern so that the score almost reaches the meat but does not cut it. Season the duck breasts with salt and pepper on both sides.
2. Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat for about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the duck breasts. Skin side down. Slowly cook the breasts to render out the fat and crisp the skin, about 10-12 minutes. Hold the breast to the pan with a spatula and drain the fat as it accumulates into a heat proof dish.
3. After the skin is golden and crisp turn the duck breast over and cook for another 3 to 5 minutes for medium-medium rare. Remove to a plate and lightly cover with foil to keep warm. Keep the pan on the heat.
4. Add the grapes to the hot pan. They should sizzle vigorously. Sauté, stirring occasionally until the juices start to release, about 2 to 3 minutes.
5. Add the shallots and sugar and cook until sugar caramelizes. Add the vinegar and cook until the vinegar bubbles thickly.
6. Add the chicken stock and reduce by half until glossy, about 4 minutes. Strain the sauce into another saucepan through a fine strainer. Press to remove pulp from the grapes. Bring the sauce to a simmer and remove from heat.
7. Use tongs to swirl each breast in the sauce and then slice on the diagonal into 2 pieces and place on a serving plate. Spoon the sauce over and serve immediately.
Note: Reserved duck fat can be used to sauté potatoes with delicious results.