I have done posts about duck breast dishes several times (mostly made in the Japanese style). Recently, even in our regular supermarket, duck breast and legs are often available and I bought one. This time, I decide to serve it with cherry port wine sauce. We served this with seasoned rice (with Italian herbs and pine nuts, came in a box) and baked blackened Brussels sprouts.
I made a quick cherry port wine sauce and poured it over the duck meat.
I cooked the duck breast as per usual. I first removed the excess skin and fat from the edges and scored the skin in a criss-cross fashion (to the depth of the fat layer). I then seasoned it with salt and black pepper on both sides. I placed it in the refrigerator for several hours without covering to make the skin dry out a bit (due to circumstances beyond my control it ended up drying in the fridge overnight). I placed the duck breast skin side down in a cold frying pan on medium flame. As the fat started rendering, I removed the excess by either pouring it into a small ramekin or mopping it up in the pan with a tongs held paper towel. After 10 minutes quite a large amount of duck fat rendered and the skin became crisp and brown (below). I flipped the duck and browned the other side for 5 minutes and then placed it in a 400F oven for 6 minutes. I let it rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
Nice rosy color of medium-rare.
For the cherry port wine sauce, I left about a teaspoon of duck fat in the pan and sautéed shallots (one finely chopped) for several minutes and deglazed the pan with port wine (about 1/4 cup, I used an American port I keep for cooking). After scraping off any brown bits, I added cherries (about 20, frozen, pitted) I reduced it until the sauce just coated the bottom of the pan and finished with pats of butter. I adjusted the seasoning by adding salt and pepper (below).
Compared to chicken breast, duck breast are supposedly safe to consume undercooked due to the processing (ducks are done on a much smaller scale). This was nice with or without the sauce.