Pan Fried Duck Breast with Braised Endive and Anchovy Sauce
Surely you all know by now how much I love cooking with duck and this pan fried duck breast joins recipes as diverse as Duck Tikka Massala to a classic Duck a l‘Orange. As can be seen from these photographs I am also rather keen on rare/pink duck and this recipe plays around with a new technique for me.
Surprisingly I have never really got on with the cold pan method of cooking pan fried duck breast and as a result decided it was time for me to put in a little effort. The theory behind the method is that it helps to render out the fat whilst simultaneously delivering a wonderfully crispy golden skin… Now I know that it works, however I had just been unable to get it to work for me, so when I found some duck breast on offer I invested a little time.
I am an idiot, it works wonderfully although it is a method of cooking that for me needed some mental adjustment. Putting meat into a cold pan is just so counter intuitive, specifically not getting that sizzle real soon always lead me to turn up the heat too quickly. The most important part of this technique is to leave it well alone for at least 10 minutes, more like 12-15, then flip!
Sexy Anchovy Sauce!
I needed something in this dish to balance against the rich pan fried duck breast and the almost bitter endive and as a result I went with a vibrant sexy anchovy sauce.
In many ways it is similar to a classic Caesar salad dressing, in essence the base of a mayonnaise with anchovies and lots of lemon juice for zing. For that reason the sauce gives this duck breast all of the high notes to brighten up and adds a lighter feel to this unashamedly cold weather dish!
Throw in some toasted nuts in order to provide a little texture and you have a dish that made both me and my wife very happy indeed!