Contrary to what many people may tell you, cooking duck breast is easier than what it seems on paper. Duck meat is known for having a high amount of fat, and with the skin on, every bite is divine to say the least. There are many online sites, where you can find the best duck breast recipes, and in this post, we bring a simple pan-seared recipe that can be a staple for your dinners.
The basic recipe
- Start by patting the duck breast dry to take out all the moisture. Next, score the skin, which means adding a few gashes to the raw skin. Note that you want to cut the flesh but the skin. You can go for parallel gashes, which look even, or even crisscross is fine.
- To prepare the breast, add salt, pepper and other seasonings of your choice. Keep the flavors simple, because the meat has flavors of its own. You can keep the breasts aside for an hour for the seasonings to seep in.
- Next, take your pan and place the duck breasts with a little olive oil. Unlike other meats, you don’t have preheat the pan in this case, because slow cooking and rise of temperature helps in rendering the fat better. Make sure that the skin side is down.
- Cook the skin-side down for about 15 minutes. You can keep collecting the fat released for cooking other veggies later. Also, make sure that the meat is nicely cooked, so don’t increase the temperature immediately. When it comes to the meat thermometer, the internal temperature should be around 125°F.
- Finally, allow the meat to rest for at least five minutes, and cut thick slices before serving.
Tips to note
Firstly, don’t add a lot of cooking fat. The meat will release the fat anyway, which will be more than what you need for searing the duck breasts. Secondly, always use a cast iron skillet for cooking duck meat, because the heat distribution is even and you can get the actual searing effect, which is impossible to achieve with a nonstick pan. As for the seasoning, stick to the basics, and if you are feeling adventurous, using a mix of fresh, local herbs is not a bad idea.
As for the meat, make sure to source the same from a known supplier, which doesn’t compromise on their farming practices. The quality of meat also makes a huge difference to the recipe.