French foods can be quite daunting to the uninitiated because of their fancy sounding names (ie. profiteroles, brandade, etc.). However, once you get pass the unfamiliar sounding names, French cuisine is actually quite assessable and often quick to prepare.
Case in point is the famous Duck L’Orange, which is really just a simple roast duck served with a sticky sweet orange sauce. It’s already simple enough, but for me, I like to go the extra mile in making it easier and faster to prepare, so instead of serving the whole duck, I used only the breasts, which are deboned already thanks to D’Artagnan.
The sauce also got a makeover. There’s the addition of ginger for a slight kick and the copious amount of butter originally used has been replaced with cornstarch for a health(ier) rendition. To soak up all the flavors, I made Kasha, a popular Eastern European grain (buckwheat groats). It’s loaded with fiber, but what’s so great about it is that it cooks in 10 minutes and have a great nutty and toasted flavor to boot. It was the perfect main course for my recent foie gras dinner party.
Ginger Orange Magret Duck with Kasha
3 Magret duck breasts from D’Artagnan
Freshly ground pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
2. With a sharp knife score the skin of the duck breasts in a criss-cross pattern and season with salt and pepper.
3. Warm an ovenproof cast iron skillet over high heat.
4. Place the duck breasts, skin side down, in the skillet to render off the fat, about 6 minutes. Reserve 2 tbs of duck fat for kasha.
5. Turn the duck breasts over and sear for 1 minute.
6. Turn the fat side down again and place the skillet into the oven to roast for 7 to 9 minutes, until breasts are medium rare.
7. Let the duck breasts rest for 5 minutes then thinly slice.
Ginger Orange Sauce
2 oranges, zested and juiced (about 1 cup)
1 tbs freshly grated ginger
1 cup water
2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
2 tbs light soy sauce
1/3 cup orange marmalade
2 tsp corn starch
1 tbs Grand Marnier
1. Over medium heat in a medium sauce pan, combine orange juice, zest, ginger, water, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, and orange marmalade. Bring to a boil, lower heat, and simmer for 5 minutes.
2. Mix corn starch with 1/2 cup cold water. Slowly pour mixture into boiling sauce while stirring until thickened.
3. Turn off the heat and add 1 tbs Grand Marnier.
2 cup buckwheat
2 tbs rendered duck fat, reserved from the seared duck breast
2 tbs fried shallots
1/2 cup mushroom stock
4 cups water
Freshly ground pepper
1. Fill a medium pot with 4 cups water and bring to a boil.
2. Add Kasha buckwheat and boil until tender (about 10-15 minutes).
3. Drain and put in a bowl. Toss with mushroom stock and rendered duck fat.
4. Season with salt and pepper and garnish with fried shallots.
1. Arrange 1/2 cup kasha in the center of the plate.
2. Place sliced duck breasts over kasha.
3. Drizzle ginger orange sauce and garnish duck with a few strips of orange zest.