Pan-seared duck breast with gingered carrots, bok choy, and tamarind-lemongrass sauce

My mom’s youngest sister, Tia Xiomara, is married to a first generation Chinese in Venezuela  (did I mention I grew up in a melting pot!?).  From a very early age, I was lucky to hang out with his family and learn about his culture. I probably would have not tried duck while I lived there (as it is not a popular protein) but I find it delicious.  With so much flavor and richness, I like to serve it over vegetables and top it with the tangy and sweet tamarind-lemongrass sauce.  It’s DUCK time!

Ingredients

Duck

  • 2 magret duck breast halves
  • Coarse kosher salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper

Gingered Carrots

  • 8 French (baby) carrots, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 1 tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce

Bok Choy

  • 4 baby bok choy (thoroughly washed)
  • 1 tsp sesame oil

Tamarind-Lemongrass Sauce

  •  1 tbsp tamarind paste
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • ¼ cup chicken broth, warm
  • 2 tbsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp olive oil (may use 1 tbsp of rendered duck fat)
  • ½ cup white onion, chopped
  • 2 tbsp lemongrass, minced

Preparation

Duck

Using a sharp knife, score the skin of the duck breast in a cross hatch pattern (careful not to cut into the breast itself).  Heat a large non-stick pan on medium-high heat. Season duck breasts evenly with salt and pepper on both sides. Reduce heat to medium-low; place breasts, skin-side down, on the hot skillet, and cook for 10-12 minutes (until most of the fat has rendered and the skin is crispy and golden). Turn the breast over and cook for 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Cut in ½ inch slices right before serving.

Gingered Carrots

Heat a medium skillet over medium-high heat and add sesame oil. Sauté baby carrots for 4-5 minutes, turning for even browning. Combine ginger and soy sauce in small bowl; add it to skillet and toss to coat. Reduce heat to medium low and continue to cook for another 2 minutes. Remove from heat.

Bok Choy

Boil 3-4 cups of water in a medium sauce pan. Season water with salt and blanch bok choy for 1 ½ to 2 minutes. Transfer to platter and drizzle with sesame oil.

Tamarind-Lemongrass Sauce

Dissolve tamarind paste and honey in chicken stock; add soy sauce, stir, and set aside.

Heat oil in small sauce pan over medium-high heat; add onion to pan and sauté for 2 minutes. Add lemongrass and sauté for an additional minute. Add tamarind mixture to pan and stir with wooden spoon. Cook for approximately 5 minutes. Blend all ingredients using immersion blender (food processor or regular blender, just be careful as mixture will be hot!) and run through mesh strainer.

Plating

Place half of the carrots over a bed of 4 bok choys halves. Top with pan-seared duck breast and drizzle with tamarind-lemongrass sauce. Enjoy!!

TIP

The boy choy and carrots may be served at room temperature on warmer days!  Afterall, the summer is almost here

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s