The Restaurant Cook Off Main - Deluxe Duck Breast with festive plum sauce and roast vegetables
2 Deluxe Duck breasts
Salt & Pepper
2 fresh plums
Apple cider vinegar
Plum & Mulled Port Preserve
Chicken stock cube
12 Brussel sprouts
4 baby potatoes
1 ripe pear
2 streaky bacon rashers
Pre-heat the oven to 180C (350F)
Score the fat of the duck, place fat side down in a cold pan. Cook slowly over a medium heat to render the fat. Season the flesh with salt & pepper. Leave to cook on the skin side for 5-6 minutes until nice and golden. Baste the duck with its own fat then flip over on to the flesh side and move off the heat and let the residual heat finish cooking.
For the sauce, cut the orange in half and squeeze out the juice. Sprinkle some sugar into a saucepan. Heat until it becomes a light golden caramel. Take off the heat and carefully add a splash of vinegar, this might spit so be careful. Then put back on the heat, let reduce until nearly gone then add the orange juice, reduce again then add the Plum & Mulled Port Preserve. Crumble in a little stock cube for flavour. Reduce to desired consistency. Season to taste.
For the vegetables, prep and blanch the sprouts in salted boiling water. Strain and refresh in cold water, then cut in half and set aside.
Peel and cut the parsnips into similar sizes and set aside. Cut the baby potatoes in half and boil in salted water until tender.
Cut the plums in half and sauté in a pan with some of the duck fat. When coloured slightly, add the blanched sprouts. Sauté for a few minutes until coloured, remove from the pan and keep warm.
Add the parsnips to the pan and colour nicely before transferring to the oven for 5-10 minutes until tender. Finely chop the bacon rashers.
In the same pan add the bacon, thyme, and pear, and fry for a couple of minutes Season to taste.
To serve, arrange the fruits and vegetables on plates. Cut the rested duck into slices and add to the plates. Spoon some sauce around.