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  • Writer's pictureLydia Gerratt

Pan fried duck breast

Pan fried duck breast

Duck is one of my all time favourites.

I especially love pan fried duck breasts (medium rare) that have been made extra juicy and tender from the to-die-for duck juices and rich duck fat which are gradually released from the duck during the slow cooking technique I use.

Duck breasts are not cheap, so when you decide to splash out on this seriously delicious meat you want to make sure it tastes wonderful when you take your first bite. To get a super crispy brown skin, melt away the layer of fat under the skin and cook the meat to melt in the mouth tenderness you need to use a low temperature, a long cooking time and a long resting time.

I love to eat the duck breasts with pilaf rice and as so much juice is made during the cooking, I use it to add more flavour to the aromatic rice.

Miraculous ingredient: duck breasts!

Pan fried duck breast


1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil oil

Coarse sea salt and black pepper to season


Take the duck breasts out of the fridge, remove the packaging, dry them as much as you can with some kitchen paper (food browns better when there isn’t any moisture) and let them come to room temperature.

Season the skin side with salt and pepper.

Heat a dry empty cast iron or stainless steel frying pan on low heat. Leave the pan for 5 minutes to warm up. Add the oil and place both duck breasts in the pan skin side down. Leave the duck to gently cook for about 10 minutes - don't be tempted to move the duck around in the pan as it will be firmly stuck to the bottom and will tear.

After 10 minutes of cooking, check that the skin is dark brown, crispy and most of the fat from under the skin will has melted into the pan.

Use a pair of tongs to turn the duck breasts over so they are meat side down in the pan. Cook for 5 minutes on a low heat. This will create a medium-rare meat. If you like your meat well done, then cook for at least 10 minutes.

Once the meat side is cooked to your liking, turn the heat off. Leave the duck breasts in the pan to rest for at least 10 minutes.

I like to slice the duck breasts into thin strips and drizzle the meat with the heavenly meat juices and duck fat that has filled the pan.

Serve up with some creamy mash potato or pilaf rice to soak up the juices and a green salad.

Preparation time 2 minutes, cooking 20 minutes, resting 10 minutes, 2 adult portions, 2 child portions

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