Pan-Seared Duck Breasts with Cherry Pinot Noir Sauce

Lunch and Dinner Entrees

Pan-Seared Duck Breasts with Cherry Pinot Noir Sauce


Servings: Makes 4 Servings

For the Duck:
4 duck breast halves (8- to 9-ounces each)
4 sprigs thyme
2 cloves garlic, chopped

For the Cherry Pinot Noir Sauce:
3 tablespoons dried cherries
1 tablespoon raisins
3 tablespoons brandy
2 shallots, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup Pinot Noir wine
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
1 cup chicken stock
1 cup beef stock
1 tablespoon butter


For the duck: Score the skin of duck in a crosshatch pattern. Trim excess fat. Rub duck with thyme and garlic. Cover and refrigerate overnight. The next day, preheat oven to 400oF. Sear duck, skin-side-down, in an oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat, until some of the fat is rendered and skin is golden brown. Turn duck and transfer skillet to oven. Roast duck for 8 minutes for medium-rare, or to desired doneness. Remove from oven and let rest for 5 minutes. Serve with cherry Pinot Noir sauce.

For the sauce: Soak cherries and raisins in brandy until plump. Strain; reserve brandy. Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and shallots; cook until shallots are softened. Add cherries and raisins. Deglaze pan with reserved brandy. Reduce until nearly dry. Add wine; reduce until nearly dry. Add vinegar; reduce to syrup. Add chicken and beef stocks; reduce until sauce thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon. Stir in butter until melted and combined. Season with salt and pepper.