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Thursday, November 3, 2011

Crispy Duck Breast in a Blackberry Sauce with Celeriac Mash

This is a perfect dish for those winter nights that are creeping in on us. It is hearty, delicious and a little fancy to impress any dinner guests you may have! Duck can be quite a fatty meat, however the way it is cooked in this meal ensures that the excess fat is thoroughly drained and leaves you with a lean and beautifully crisp and succulent piece of meat. I have made the sauce before with fresh stoned cherries which work very well, yet as they are not in season at the mo blackberries work very well and can still be found in shops. Celeriac is really easy to work with for those of you who may not be familiar with this veg. Its makes a gorgeous mash with a twist, we all went for seconds!
(Serves 2)
2 Duck Breasts
1 Shallot
2 Tsp Unrefined Brown Sugar
1 Small Punnet of Fresh Blackberries
1/2  Glass of Port
1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Celeriac
2 Medium Potatoes
1 Tbsp Creme Fraiche
Salt & Pepper

Blackcurrant Sauce:
1. Finely chop the shallots. Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan and soften the shallots over a medium heat.
2. Add the Port, Balsamic vinegar, blackberries and sugar. You can chop the blackberries or leave them whole depending on the consistency you like. Bring this sauce to a rapid boil, and then reduce to a simmer.
3. Simmer the sauce for at least 10 minutes until reduced and thickened. If you like a smooth sauce, liquidise it at this stage.
Duck Breasts:
1. In the spirit of SkinnyLovesFood trim off any excess fat on the duck breasts. To cook these in  a healthy way but to keep the taste I like to use the George Foreman grill. This method cooks the duck breasts evenly and lets the skin crisp up perfectly. It also does the obvious by draining all of the fat from the breasts. Nothing wrong with keeping the duck fat for your roast potatoes on a Sunday when your having a day off from being good!
2. Heat the grill for at least 5 minutes before cooking the breasts, it needs to be at its hottest so that the skin crisps immediately. Score the top of the skin and season with salt & pepper to ensure a crispy finish. The duck only takes 7-8 minutes on the George Foreman, depending on how pink you like them.
Celeriac Mash:
1. Peel and wash the celeriac and potatoes. Chop up into even sized cubes and add to a saucepan of boiling water. Bring to the boil and reduce to a simmer for 25 minutes or so until soft throughout. Drain the celeriac and potatoes once cooked and return to a very low heat.
2. With a masher, mash the celeriac and potato together. Stir in Salt, pepper and the creme fraiche. If it is too dry add in a little skimmed milk at this point. 
To serve place the celeriac mash in the centre of the plate with the duck breast. Pour the sauce over the dish and enjoy!     

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