Crispy Skin Duck Breast with Pinot Macerated Cherries

By Clooney Restaurant, Auckland

RECIPE: Crispy Skin Duck Breast with Pinot Macerated Cherries. Brought to you by MiNDFOOD

Duck and Pinot pairing couldn’t be more perfect, as the winemakers at Cloudy Bay vineyards in Marlborough, New Zealand will tell you. The Clooney Restaurant in Auckland share with us exclusively, this recipe making the most of Cloudy Bay’s Pinot.

Serves 4

4 duck breasts

Canola oil

2 garlic cloves

3 sprigs thyme

25g butter

1 jar of provisions pinot cherries

1 head of radicchio leaves washed

2 medium sized celeriac

Salt pastry

250g flour

30g plain salt

½ tbsp chopped rosemary

½ cup of cold water

Mix together the flour, salt and rosemary. Make a well and mix in the water gradually. Bring together to form a dough. Rest in the fridge for two hours.

Split the dough into two. Using a rolling pin and extra flour, roll the dough out bigger enough to completely enclose the celeriac. Put onto cake rack & bake at 160C till the celeriacs are tender. The time will vary depending on size but generally 5–6 hours will do. Leave to cool slightly, break open the crust and remove the celeriac.

Put onto a board and cut the skin & outer layer off. Break into big rustic pieces. Keep warm. Preheat oven to 180C.

Trim the breast of excess skin and score the skin at 2mm intervals. Dry and rub a little salt onto the skin. Heat a heavy based skillet or fry pan and cook gently skin side down to render the fat and crisp the skin, draining off the fat as you go.

When the skin is crisp turn the breast over and sear the flesh. Flip them back over skin side down and put the pan into the oven for 3-4 minutes. Take out of the pan and rest in a warm spot.

To serve:
Cut the pinot cherries in half and remove the stones, warm through gently. Heat a sauté pan, add the butter and the duck to it. Build up the heat, add the garlic and thyme when the butter starts to brown baste the breasts. Carve, season.

This July, food and wine lovers can experience their own urban duck season by following the Cloudy Bay Pinot & Duck trail from one restaurant to the next. For more information on Cloudy Bay visit


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