Duck shooting season may be over but I have a lovely recipe for Wild Duck to share with you. You can also use the recipe with farmed Barbary Duck that’s more readily available in the shops. Barbary Ducks are none other than the Muscovy Duck (which, by the way, is the only domesticated duck not related to the Mallard!). Their meat is dark like their wild cousins and is lean and tender, which makes them ideal for the dinner table. However they are bigger birds so if you are using them in this recipe only use 2 breasts rather than the 4 recommended for the Wild Duck.
Wild Duck Breasts with Berry and Port Sauce
4 wild duck breasts
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the sauce:
2 good tablespoons cranberry sauce
1 glass Port
Pre heat the oven to 200 degrees C, Gas Mark 6. Rub the duck breasts lightly with a little oil and season then pan fry, skin side down over a medium heat for 2 minutes until they begin to crisp and brown. Place in a small roasting tin, skin side up and roast for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile spoon the cranberry sauce into a small pan with the blueberries and heat gently, stirring occasionally until the mixture is simmering and the blueberries are softened. Now stir in the Port and pass the mixture through a sieve pressing the mixture through with the back of a spoon so that none of the liquid is wasted. Return the smooth sauce to the pan to reheat gently, adding a little water if it seems too thick; it should be just thick enough to pour.
Serve the duck breasts sliced on a bed of seasonal vegetables, spinach or spring greens are good, with a little of the sauce poured over. Sauté or Lyonnaise potatoes go particularly well with this dish.
Cuvée de Jean Baptiste Audy (£6.99)
This is a captivating wine made in the style of old-fashioned Claret with a portion of Syrah in the blend. Cuvée is a dark garnet colour with intense aromas. In the mouth the wine has a good backbone with smooth tannins and good fruit. With notes of blackberry jam, ripe dark plums and black pepper with a hint of smoke Cuvée is full of character and will pair well with the dark red meat of the duck.
Chateau Ballan Larquette 2008 (£8.99)
An award winning, rounded and well balanced wine from Saint Laurent du Bois. This is a versatile Claret with supple, ripe tannins and dark firm blackcurrant flavours with good earthy undertones as well as complex notes of black cherry, crushed black pepper, mint and blueberry.
Mathilde de La Fleur Morange 2006 (£19.60)
The Mathilde 2006 was Jancis Robinson’s ‘Wine of the Week’ and is the Second Wine of Chateau La Fleur Morange and is made from 100 year old vines in Saint-Pey-D’Armens. This is an opulent, well structured and rich wine with notes of cherries, blueberries, chocolate, plum and earth.
Chateau Moulin Riche 2008 (£25.99)
Moulin Riche is the Second Wine of the Second Growth (2ème Cru Classé) Château Léoville Poyferré in Saint Julien. This wine is concentrated, dense and powerful with a voluptuous finish and has smoky flavours of spiced black fruits and plum. The 2008 is packed with ripe black fruits and is a sophisticated wine wine with good tannic backbone and structure.