Guest Blog – The Duck Father Takes Centre Stage…uhm Plate

Crispy pan-seared duck breast is oh so delicious and one of my favourite dishes. Until recently, I always thought that cooking it was complicated and most probably required some kind of Degree in cooking and that pan searing methodology was better left to the experts.

After watching Guvon Academy‘s Chef Karen Blanché on #GrootFM last week I realised that nothing could be further from the truth. To pan sear a duck breast is even easier to make than steak. In fact the process is extremely similar.

Chef Karen’s Seared Duck Breast with Creamy Mash, Char Grilled Vegetables and a Berry Red Wine Reduction is definitely a must-try!

Alright, let’s get started:

Seared Duck Breast 

With Creamy Mash, Char Grilled Vegetables with a Berry Red Wine Reduction


For the Vegetables:

  • 4 Baby Onions
  • 8 Snap Peas
  • 100g Mushrooms
  • 4 Carrots
  • 4 stems of Leek
  • 100 Butter / Duck Fat

 For the mash:

  • 1 kg Potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon Parsley
  • 4 teaspoons Butter
  • 1 teaspoon Lemon Juice
  • 1 teaspoon Garlic
  • Pinch of Salt
  • Pinch of Pepper
  • 200ml Cream

For the sauce:

  • 250ml Red Wine
  • 500g Frozen Mixed Berries
  • 100ml Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Beef Stock Powder
  • ½ Red Onion
  • 250ml Water
  • 15ml Golden Syrup

For the Duck:

  • 4 Duck Breasts
  • A sprinkle of salt over each Breast

Watch Chef Karen in Action here

Chefs Notes:

Don’t throw out the fat. This silk, tasty duck fat enhances anything it touches.  Use it to roast potatoes, sauté vegetables and sear meats or poultry.

Allow the liquid fat to cool slightly and then strain into a clean sealable container using a fine sieve that is lines with cheesecloth.   Store the duck fat covered in the fridge for up to 6 months or on the freezer for a year

Duck Fat = Liquid Gold


For the Mash:

  • Boil the potatoes with the skin on after they are right. Take them out and peel them then put through a potato mincer and then pass through a sieve. Then add the soft butter and cream a fold in, then add the garlic, parsley and the salt & pepper in and caringly fold the mash until everything is well combined.

For the vegetables:

  • Take the baby onions and take the skin off, then cut in halve and fry face down with a bit of oil and butter.
  • Wash the snap peas, then blanch them once that is done put in a ice bath and then fry them in a little oil and butter
  • Slice the mushrooms and then fry in a little butter until they are golden.
  • Peel the carrots and the clean at the stem of the carrot and then blanch them, once that is done then but in an ice bath and after take out once cooled and dry.
  • Cut the leeks by top and tailing and then wash them, then dry with paper towel and cut into the desired cut. Fry the leeks with butter, salt and pepper, till slightly charred.

For the Sauce:

  • Combine all ingredients to the pot let it simmer for 1 hour on a low heat.
  • Pass the mixture through a sieve and reduce for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Add Salt and pepper to taste.

For The Duck:

  • With a very sharp knife, score the skin in a cross-hatch pattern. Go only as deep as the skin is thick. You don’t want to actually cut into the flesh.
  • Pat dry, and sprinkle both sides with salt.
  • Heat a DRY Thick Base pan to moderate heat.
  • Place the duck, skin side down in the pan and sear until fat has rendered and skin is deep brown and crisp
  • Turn the duck over and fry for a further 3 minutes
  • Place the duck in an oven on 160’C for 6 minutes
  • Remove the duck from the Oven, rest skin side up on a cutting board for7-10 minutes
  • Slice breasts against the grain in thick slices

To assemble:

  • Pipe Mash in a dotted manner on the plate.
  • Place your vegetables in your own artsy manner on the plate.
  • Lay slices on warm plates in a fab pattern and
  • Top each portion with a Berry Red Wine Sauce
  • Top with the berry sauce.
  • Serve immediately

Blog by:
Marie- Rose (Guvon Hotels & Spas guest blogger)

Find out more about Chef Karen and Guvon Academy

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