Pierre Koffmann's spiced duck breast recipe has a wonderfully fruity kick to complement the mild spice of the sauce. Served with your choice of seasonal veg - braised chicory is particularly apt - this makes a great dinner party recipe.
Koffmann's cooking is undeniably refined; classical yet humble, with provincial French touches grounding the skilful elegance of the food. Taking inspiration from his Gascon roots, Koffmann artfully extracts extraordinary flavour from ordinary ingredients and cuts.
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In a saucepan, heat 15ml of the vegetable oil. Add the shallots, spices and bay, cook until the shallots are translucent and are soft in texture. Deglaze the pan with the vinegar, add the sugar and reduce, cooking until it is a light caramel colour
15ml of vegetable oil
1 small shallot, round, finely chopped
1/2 cinnamon stick
1 tsp five-spice powder
1/2 tsp ground ginger
2 cardamom pods
2 star anise
10 pink peppercorns
1 bay leaf
15g of sugar
15ml of white wine vinegar
Add the Grand Marnier and orange juice and reduce by two thirds, or until it resembles a syrup. Add the stock and reduce the sauce by two thirds. Pass through a fine sieve, discarding the shallots and spices, and pour the sauce back into the saucepan. Set aside until needed
50ml of orange juice, freshly squeezed
15ml of Grand Marnier
300ml of duck stock, or chicken stock
Score the skin of the duck breast by making shallow cuts and season both sides of the breast with salt and pepper
4 duck breasts
Heat the remaining vegetable oil in a large, heavy heatproof pan until very hot. Add the duck breast to the pan skin-side down and cook until brown and crispy, 4-5 minutes. Turn the breast over without piercing the meat and cook for another 4-5 minutes, depending on how pink you like your duck. Remove from the heat and allow to rest
45ml of vegetable oil
Return the sauce to the heat, whisk in the butter and check the seasoning. Cut the duck breast into slices and serve with the sauce and your choice of seasonal vegetables
20g of butter
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