Duck Breast with Blueberries


This recipe came as a “why not” alternative to the winter duck breast with apples, pears or even frozen cherries (which is yummy with a glass of burgundy). After all, we’ve had it with figs so blueberries makes sense; a first, and it won’t be the last. Everyone loved it.


2 duck breasts
1 teaspoon coarse salt
6 black peppercorns, coarsely crushed
½ teaspoon thyme
12 oz frozen blueberries
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

Yield: 4 servings


Score the duck breast skins (so fat can render during cooking) diagonally at 1-inch intervals with a sharp knife. Season the skin side with salt, peppercorn and thyme for 15 minutes. (You can also do this the night before and return to fridge.) Combine blueberries, sugar and water in a small saucepan and cook over medium high flame, stirring. Lower heat and cook till puréed (add water if necessary). Reserve. Warm up a cast iron frying pan, add duck breasts (they need to be out of fridge 20 minutes to be at room temperature before cooking) on the skin side and cook for 5 minutes, then pour half of the fat out. Cook the other side for 2-3 minutes and keep warm. Deglaze the frying pan with red wine vinegar and add the blueberry mixture. Stir and cook for another minute or two. Slice the duck breasts on serving plate and pour the blueberry mixture around. Accompaniment: I had some sliced boiled potatoes leftover, which I sautéed till golden in the remaining duck fat. Polenta is another good accompaniment.