Start the new year right: Orange glazed duck

Thu, 01/02/2020 - 5:00pm

Keep the holiday food coming or just mix up your regular routine with this delicious duck breast recipe. The sweet orange cranberry glaze looks and smells like Christmas with spice hints of cinnamon and a little bit of heat from red pepper flakes. It all sits on a creamy cloud of Yukon Gold and sweet potato mash.

Be not afraid… of cooking duck! The secret is to be sure you render the fat from under the skin. The trick? Score the skin and start the duck, skin side down, in a cold pan — the secret to perfectly cooked duck with a magical crispy skin!

This glaze is also magical on pork roast or chicken thighs... or your old shoe. It’s that good!

Orange Cranberry Glazed Duck

Potato Mash

3 lbs. Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled

1 1/2 lbs. sweet potatoes, peeled

1 large onion, chopped

1 stick butter

2 tsp. salt

2 tsp. black pepper

1 1/2 cups milk


1 cup marmalade

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup cranberries

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. red pepper flakes

1 tsp. thyme

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 cup Gran Marnier

Eight 7 oz. duck breasts

2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. black pepper

2 Tbsp. olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cut the potatoes into large, evenly sized chunks about 3-inch. Place in a large metal pot and cover in cold water. Bring to a boil and cook until the potatoes are all tender when pierced with a fork.

Drain in a colander and place back in the pot. Add the butter, salt, pepper, and 3/4 cup of the milk. Whip with an electric mixer until smooth, scraping down the sides periodically and slowly adding additional milk as needed to create a creamy texture. Cover and set aside until ready to plate.

Place all of the glaze ingredients (reserve ½ cup of cranberries) in a large pot over medium heat and bring to a low boil, stirring frequently, to avoid bubbling over. Reduce heat to low and continue to simmer and reduce while you prepare the duck.

Dry the duck breasts thoroughly with paper towels and trim any excess fat, leaving skin intact.

Using a sharp knife, score the skin of the duck breast in parallel diagonal slashes about 1-inch apart, taking care, not to cut the flesh under the skin. This will allow the fat to render and create a crispy skin.

Season the duck breasts on both sides with the salt and pepper. Place the breasts, skin-side down, in a cold cast iron skillet that has been drizzled with the olive oil.

Turn the heat to medium high and let the breasts cook until the skin is crispy brown and fat has rendered, about 5 to 7 minutes. Flip to the flesh side and cook for 2 to 3 more minutes.

Drain the fat from the pan (reserve the rendered fat for future use). Transfer the breasts, skin side up, to a 9” x 13” baking dish and place in the oven for 8 to 10 minutes, until temperature registers 120 degrees. Pour the glaze over the duck breasts and turn to coat and place back in the oven for 5 to 10 minutes. When the internal temperature reaches 130 degrees remove from oven and cover with foil to keep warm. Let rest for 10 minutes.

Slice each breast across the grain into medallions and serve over the potato mash and top with extra glaze. Serve with sautéed pea pods, roasted asparagus, or a simple salad.

For more delicious recipes, check out Pam’s blog: