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Seared Smoked Duck with Beetroot Puree

Seared Smoked Duck with Beetroot Puree

Super simple to make, but restaurant quality on the plate, this succulent duck breast dish will impress your husband, mother-in-law, or best friend.

Serves 2

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120g beetroot, peeled and cubed

120g pumpkin, peeled and cubed

2 smoked duck breasts

200g French beans, trimmed

½ teaspoon of salt

½ tablespoon butter

½ tablespoon olive oil

Orange Sauce

1 orange juice (about 150ml)

½ teaspoon kecap manis

½ tablespoon oyster sauce

1.5 teaspoons honey

¼ teaspoon five spice powder

½ tablespoon butter

Freshly ground black pepper


    1. For the puree: First put your beetroot in a heatproof bowl, add 2 tablespoons of water, cover and microwave on medium heat for 7 minutes. 
    2. Add the pumpkin to the beetroot, cover and microwave on medium heat for another 7 minutes. Both should now be very tender when pierced with a fork.
    3. Add ¼ teaspoon salt, butter and olive oil, and mash or use a stick blender to blend till very smooth. Keep covered and warm while preparing the other elements.
    4. For the duck: While the beetroot is steaming (Step 1), use a very sharp knife to cut a crisscross pattern on the duck skin - make sure you only cut through the skin and fat, do not cut to the meat.
    5. Place the duck breast skin side down on a cold frying pan, and turn the heat on to medium. Use a small heavy plate to weigh down the duck breast, ensuring that as much of the skin is flattened against the pan as possible.
    6. After 12 minutes, turn the duck over - the skins should be crispy and brown, and the fat rendered in the pan. Cook the other side briefly, about 2 - 3 minutes, and remove from heat. Reserve the duck fat for use later.
    7. For the French beans:  Bring a saucepan of water to boil. When the water is boiling, add the French beans. Cook the beans for 2 -3 minutes until they are brightly coloured and tender. Add 1 teaspoon of the reserved duck fat to the bean water, then strain the beans. Toss with ¼ teaspoon of salt.
  • For the sauce. Place all the ingredients in a small saucepan, then add ½ teaspoon of reserved duck fat. Mix well and bring to a gentle simmer. Allow to cook, stirring, until the sauce is thickened and shiny.
  • To assemble the dish: First, take a big spoonful of the puree and ‘swoosh’ it onto two dinner plates. Divide your French beans and place a pile on each plate. Slice the duck breasts into 1-inch pieces (you can also serve them whole - 1 per person). Drizzle sauce over the duck , sprinkle with fresh black pepper and enjoy!
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