Pan Seared Duck Breast with Piripiri Plum Sauce

Pan Seared Duck Breast with Piripiri Plum Sauce

This restaurant-style seared duck breast with plum sauce lets him know how grateful you are.

Here is a few tips that will help you to cook duck breast like a pro:

  • Scoring the duck can help to render the fat from the skin faster with greater exposure to heat.
  • Starting the duck breast in a cold pan, and then cooking the duck breast low and slow, gives the fat more time to render, while the meat becomes tender and juicy.
  •  The best way to check whether duck breast is cooked or not, use a meat thermometer – perfectly pink duck should have an internal temperature of 60C for medium or 68C for well-done.
  • The end of the pan-frying process is the beginning of your mouth-watering sauce. The quick pan sauce ensures that none of the tasty browned bits bits will be wasted.


Serves 2              Prep time: 15 minutes      Cooking time: 30 min

2 duck breasts


For the plum sauce:

1/2 shallot, chopped

1/4 cup of red wine, or Port wine, or Marsala

1/4 cup chicken stock

1/2 cup Manaaki Piri Piri Plum chutney

2 sprigs of thyme

1 Tbs cold butter




Duck breast. Place duck breasts between 2 sheets of plastic wrap. Pound lightly to even thickness. Discard plastic wrap. Using a very sharp knife, score skin in a 1 –  2 cm diamond pattern. Do not cut into flesh. Season the duck breast with a salt,  generously on the skin sight, lightly on the flesh side.

Place duck breasts, skin side down, in a cold cast iron pan (or heavy pan). Place pan over low to medium-low heat. After about 5 minutes, the fat should begin to gently bubble. Cook until much of the fat has rendered, skin is brown, about 15 minutes. Then increase the heat, flip and cook on the flesh side until internal temperature registers 60C for medium or 68C for well-done (use your meat thermometer). Remove duck from pan and set aside to rest.

Plum sauce:

Meanwhile, pour off all but 2 tablespoons drippings from skillet. Add shallot to skillet and stir over medium heat 30 seconds. Add broth, wine, thyme and plum chutney. Increase heat to high and boil until sauce is reduced to glaze, stirring often, about 3 minutes. Whisk in 1 tablespoon cold butter. Season sauce to taste with salt and pepper. For a smoother sauce texture, mix the sauce using an immersion blender (optional).

Thinly slice duck. Arrange slices out on plates. Spoon sauce over and serve.

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