Duck and Orange Fennel Salad
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Duck and Orange Fennel Salad<div class="yasr-vv-stars-title-container"><div class='yasr-stars-title yasr-rater-stars'
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Duck is one of our all-time favorite proteins. Rich, fatty and bursting with flavor it is so versatile in it’s application. Duck Salad is somewhat of an under appreciated dish, but it’s a brilliant salad perfect for a mid week dinner. Given how fatty the duck breast is it pairs astonishingly well with flavors on the bitter side of the food spectrum – which makes this dish pairing with fennel so perfect

For the best results we recommend scoring and then refrigerating the duck breasts for at least 24 hours and up to 3-4 days. This is a technique taught by the legendary Thomas Keller and completely dries out the duck skin, which makes for an even crispier result

As always, remember to save that rendered duck fat, as it is liquid gold in the kitchen. Perfect for adding some rich, decadent flavor to fried potatoes or simply using as a substitute for oil as a base for frying proteins

Contrasting flavors is what makes the Duck and Orange Fennel Salad special

Certain dishes are magic in the mouth because of the perfect balance and harmony they create. This is one of those dishes. Sweetness is met with sour; Acid is mixed with Aniseed. All in all, the flavors work well together even though they are contrasting

Having flavors from different ends of the spectrum help to keep recipes in balance, and in turn, make you want to keep going back for more. If you just piled on sweet flavors on top of sweet flavors, the dish would be one note. After one or two bites you won’t want anymore. For example, imagine having Sweet and Sour Pork, but instead of sourness from vinegar, the sauce has Honey in it. Might taste good for 1 or two bites, but you’ll be sick after that! A Sweet and Sweet Pork dish doesn’t sound appetizing!

Duck Salad with Fennel and Orange

Hence, the contrasting flavors in the Duck and Orange Fennel Salad truly are special. Sweetness is brought to the table from the Duck. Rendered down Duck Skin is so rich and sweet, delicious. Contrasting that sweetness of the Duck is Green Apple and Orange. Both of which bring a beautiful sourness and acidic hit to the dish. In turn, the Duck becomes more palatable and enjoyable. From the first bite to the last

The addition of Fennel to the recipe is a complete game changer, bringing a beautiful aniseed flavor to the dish. Aniseed can be an off-putting taste to some but remember that this recipe is all about creating perfect harmony and balance. The Aniseed flavor will be subtle, and will balance well with the fattiness of the beautiful Duck

Pomegranates add a lovely color and texture to the dish

We finish off this amazing Duck and Orange Fennel Salad with the inclusion of Pomegranate seeds. They themselves have a slightly sweet taste, but it won’t overpower the balance you’ve created in this dish. Instead, they bring a beautiful texture and brilliant color to the dish. So, if you’re looking to get a little bit showy with your cooking, why not sprinkle over some Pomegranate seeds right before serving!

Recipe Details

Servings

2 people

Prep time

10 minutes

Cooking time

20 minutes

Total time

30 minutes

Duck Salad with Orange and Fennel Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 Duck Breasts, skin on
  • ½ large Fennel, sliced
  • ½ cup Fennel Fronds, coarsely chopped (green leaves on top of fennel)
  • 1 Green Apple, diced
  • 1 Orange, segmented & roughly diced
  • Seeds of 1 Pomegranate
  • Juice from half a lemon
  • 1 tbsp. Red Wine Vinegar or Sherry Vinegar
  • 1 heaped tsp. Dijon Mustard
  • 4-6 tbsp. of good Olive Oil (quantity dependent on your flavor preference)
  • Salt and Pepper

Instructions

  1. With a sharp knife, score the skin of the Duck Breast in a diagonal pattern, being careful to ensure you do not cut too deep into the Duck meat. Season well with salt
  2. Place Duck skin side down on a cold cast iron skillet or frying pan onto the stove top on medium / low heat. It’s important to cook the skin very slowly at a low temperature as the goal is to render all of the fat and leave only a beautiful, crispy skin. Cooking on a high heat will not allow enough time for the fat to render
  3. Cook for approximately 15 minutes skin side down, you want the duck almost completely cooked through. Turn over and cook for a further 1-2 minutes, just enough to seer the breast side nice and golden brown. Once the internal temperature of the Duck reaches 130 degrees, remove from the heat to rest
  4. To make the vinaigrette begin by combining the lemon juice, Vinegar and Dijon Mustard into a small mixing bowl and whisk together. Then slowly combine the Olive Oil as you continue to whisk to emulsify the liquid. Add Salt & Pepper and check the taste. If it is a little too acidic for your liking, add more Oil until you hit the flavor profile you prefer
  5. Combine the Fennel, Fennel Fronds, Orange, Apple and Pomegranate seeds into a large salad bowl. Add the vinaigrette and toss together so all ingredients are nicely coated. Place individual salad in the center of a serving plate
  6. Cut the Duck on a 45-degree angle into slices. Carefully place Duck pieces on top of the salad, add some finishing salt and serve immediately

We hope you’ve enjoyed our Simple Duck and Orange Fennel Salad with Pomegranates Recipe. We’ve got plenty more amazing Duck recipes in our Poultry section here. Here are a couple of our favorites that we’d love you to try

Happy Cooking!

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