Duck breast with Saskatoon berry sauce
Preparation: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
2 duck breasts from Aux Champs d’Élisé
1 tbsp (15 ml) duck fat from Aux Champs d’Élisé
1 shallot, chopped
1 tbsp (15 ml) honey
1 tbsp (15 ml) raspberry-flavoured cider vinegar from Vinaigrerie Gingras
½ cup (125 ml) fortified rosé wine from Coteau St-Paul
1 cup (150 g) Saskatoon berries*
1/3 cup (80 ml) Homemade or canned demi-glace
1 tsp (5 ml) Provence herbs
To taste ground salt and pepper
Fruit of a shrub, also referred to as wild pears or Saskatoons. The deep purple fruit are round, sweet, scented and about 1 cm in diameter. Saskatoon berries may be eaten fresh or baked in pies, muffins and jams. They are wonderful complements to salty dishes such as this duck breast recipe.
1. Unwrap the duck breasts and use a small knife to trim away the membrane, fat and tissue on the meat side.
2. Gently score the skin side through the fat layer down to the meat. Do not cut too deep, so that fat renders easily during cooking. Salt and pepper both sides.
3. Use a thick-bottomed pan (cast iron is best) for cooking. Preheat the pan on medium. Add the duck breasts fat side down. As the fat is rendered, lower the heat and baste the duck breasts with the fat several times. (If too much fat is rendered, pour excess into a container. You can reuse this fat to cook potatoes and other vegetables).
4. Turn over duck breasts after 8 to 10 minutes. The fat side should be golden and crispy. Continue cooking the other side for 8 to 10 minutes, or until an internal temperature between 60°C and 65°C (140°F and 149°F) is reached on the meat thermometer.
5. Remove the duck breasts from the pan and cover with aluminum foil. Let stand 8 to 10 minutes before serving. Note: This way, you will obtain more juicy meat and prevent blood and flavours from the meat settling on the bottom of your plate. Duck breast is served rare. Do not overcook, because it will become tough and less flavourful.
6. Cut into slivers and top with Saskatoon berry sauce.
7. In a small pot, sweat the shallot in duck fat on medium-high for 2 minutes. Add honey and vinegar. Mix and cook 1 minute.
8. Add fortified wine, Saskatoon berries, demi-glace and seasoning. Lower heat and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes or until smooth. Adjust seasoning.