Roasted duck breast with plum sauce

Roasted duck breast with plum sauce

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(59 ratings)

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Cooking time

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 15 mins - 20 mins Plus resting

Skill level

Easy

Servings

Serves 2

This easy yet impressive recipe makes a stylish main course for a special occasion

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition info

Nutrition

kcalories
904
protein
44g
carbs
39g
fat
64g
saturates
20g
fibre
2g
sugar
38g
salt
1.05g

Ingredients

  • 2 duck breasts
  • 1 thyme sprig
  • 1 star anise
  • 25g butter

For the plum sauce

  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 250g dark red plums, halved, stoned and cut into small wedges
  • 50g demerara sugar
  • 50ml red wine
  • 300ml beef stock

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Method

  1. For the sauce, fry the shallot in the oil for 5 mins or until softened but not coloured. Add the plums and sugar, stirring for a few mins until the sugar has dissolved. Add the red wine and stock, then simmer for about 15 mins, stirring occasionally, until softened and slightly thickened. Keep warm or leave at room temperature for up to a day before reheating to serve.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 180C/ 160C fan/gas 4. Score the skin of the duck breasts with a sharp knife and season well with salt and pepper. Heat a non-stick frying pan and place the duck breasts in, skin-side down. Fry for 6-7 mins, then turn and add the thyme, star anise and butter. Allow this to melt, basting the duck with the juices, then transfer everything to a small roasting tin and finish in the oven for 5-6 mins for pink or 10-12 mins for well done.
  3. When the duck is ready, baste again with the juices, then rest for 5 mins while you finish everything else.
  4. To serve, thinly slice each duck breast on a chopping board. Arrange on each plate along with a spoon of the Creamed potatoes, some of the plum sauce and the Buttered spinach.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, February 2010

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Comments

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marksie531's picture

Made this last night for 4 (multiplied all the ingredients by 2). I followed the recipe to the letter but instead of reducing the sauce for 15 minutes, I reduced for about 30/35 minutes, the sauce was delicious with a lovely consistency. Super recipe, easy, but real woh factory, will defiantly be making this again.

loauty's picture

Used this recipe for christmas lunch, made the sauce the day before, beautiful recipe for duck, will definitely cook this again.

moltonbrown's picture

Great Dish. I've never cooked duck breasts before - such an easy recipe but with fantastic results.

skemp's picture

This was the first time I had attempted to cook duck - was a really simple recipe to follow. Loved the flavour of the plum sauce. Will definitely cook this again.

mickforfood's picture

Great dish. I was surprised how well the duck turned out. It was a nice pink as predicted by the recipe for the times I used. It took me about an hour to get it all done though including preparation but I'm pretty new to dishes like this!

johnstanbury's picture

OMG! absolutely delicious!

kintburycook's picture

Really easy to make and pleasant, without being a fantastic dish. One of two alterations I made was that after researching several different plum sauce recipes on the internet, I added star anise to the sauce itself (before roasting the duck later). Despite this addition, I still felt the sauce lacked something in the final tasting - next time I may add ginger, fennel seeds, garlic or something else sweet, like some orange juice. Another alteration, is that knowing James Martin's tendency to over-butter dishes, I did cut back the 25g of butter to 10g just before putting the duck breasts in the oven to roast. It was sufficient. Three out of five stars.

franhudson's picture
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Made this tonight and it was fabulous. Very impressive restaurant quality dish.
Made sauce the previous day, used less liquid as advised by previous reviews - it had no shape to it....quite mushy, but delicious when reheated today.
Cooked the duck breast specifically to the times stated ( minimum times for pink duck) and it was perfect.

jule955's picture
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I was surprised at how easy the recipe is. I always thought duck was hard to cook, but this is really simple. Delicious too, it's become a real favourite. I find it a bit too sweet though, so next time I'll use less sugar. And the plums can also be overpowering, so I use fewer.

scallun's picture

I made this recipe for Valentine's Day a few years ago, and it was fantastic. My boyfriend still mentions this dinner, and I've made it a couple of times since. A real treat that tastes amazing, but is really simple to pull off. Give it a go, you won't regret it.

heatherg3000's picture
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Really easy to make and impressive looking too! Sauce was lovely, although my plums did start to get mushy and lose their shape! Maybe simmered for just a bit too long!

hanabie's picture
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Lovely dish, makes a lot of sauce and best to use slightly less stock than it says...

buyer87's picture
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Great weekend/dinner party treat!

glenyst's picture
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This really works. There was a lot of sauce, but that's OK, and it was a bit on the runny side, but that was OK too, in this particular case. I don't think the picture does it justice - with plenty of sauce, it isn't as dry as it looks. The duck was nice and pink and the whole thing was relatively quick and easy. I didn't change anything, except that I didn't use all the stock because it wouldn't fit in my pan. (I used all the wine though). I think I'd use the smaller amount on purpose next time.

jolykerr's picture
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Fantastic best recipe I have used yet...Plum sauce lovely. Had duck in Paris and liked it ever since but nothing ever tasted like it until this. Cheers

aliceme's picture
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My first attempt for duck and it was a big success!!!
Thank you!!!

gg1869's picture
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Tried this for Valentine's day - major success. The sauce was delicious (but perhaps could do with longer to reduce or less stock). The whole thing looked great too. Tried James's sticky lamb chops on the bbc site as well. Again, terrific.

Instructions very simple to follow.

Bought one of his books today - first cookbook I've ever bought!

melaniefairbairn's picture

Superb. Easy to make. Made sauce earlier in the day only used 100ml stock as recommended by others. Could only get red plums and not dark red. When reheated let it simmer to become nice and syrupy.

bezza110's picture
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The plum sauce really made this dish. Used dark brown soft sugar instead of Demerara served with spring onion and garlic mash

laurahobby's picture
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A very easy dish to do when trying to impress guests!

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