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Cinnamon Spiced Duck Breast

Recipe Date:
July 15, 2013
Serving Size:
Cook Time:
Imperial (US)
  • Duck:

  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 4 duck breasts
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cumin

  • Risotto:

  • 2 tbsps butter
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme
  • 2 tsps fresh sage finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 3 tbsps chopped shallot
  • 2 tsps curry powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 cup Arborio rice
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup pumpkin or butternut squash puree
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • ½ cup mascarpone cheese -- optional

  • Blueberry Reduction Sauce:

  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1/2 cup fruity red wine
  • 2 tbsps balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 2 tbsps rendered duck fat

This cinnamon spiced duck breast is served over curried pumpkin rissoto with a blueberry reduction sauce.  It is a bit labor intensive but worth the effort.  Pair with Lincourt Annie Dyer Pinot Noir.

1) Start by melting butter in medium sauce pan being careful to not let it burn. Add shallots and garlic, and cook for 4 minutes or until shallots turn clear. At this point at sage and thyme and cook for 30 seconds before adding Arborio rice. At the same time combine pumpkin and chicken broth in second sauce pan and cook on medium until well blended.

2) Continuously stir Arborio rice for 2 minutes, and then add cumin and curry powder. Stir until blended then add white wine and cook until nearly all liquid is gone. At this point the pumpkin mixture should be uniform, and ready to add. Add pumpkin and chicken broth a ½ cup to 1 cup at a time being sure to stir constantly. This will take roughly 15 minutes as the rice begins to absorb moisture and thicken.

3) While the risotto is cooking preheat oven to 375° then combine cinnamon, brown sugar, salt, pepper, and cumin. With a sharp knife, score the fatty side of each duck breast in a cross-hatch pattern. This will help the duck fat to render more quickly allowing for crispier skin. Lightly dust both sides of each duck breast making sure to fully coat. Melt butter in large skillet (preferably oven safe) and allow to slightly brown.

4) Place duck breasts fat side down in butter and allow approximately 6 minutes to render off fat. It is very important that the heat is high enough to render, but not hot enough to allow smoking. After rendering, reserve duck fat in separate vessel for the reduction sauce. Flip duck breasts and allow another one minute of cook time. At this point you want to transfer the breasts to the oven, either in the same pan used for rendering, or a greased oven safe pan. Cook for another 6 minutes or until duck is medium rare.

5) While duck breasts are in oven, combine duck fat, blueberries, red wine, balsamic vinegar, and allspice in small sauce pan and bring up to heat. Once the blueberries have softened, proceed to muddle the fruit, and then drop heat to low. Continue to simmer for remainder of cook time, or until the mixture has reduced to half original volume.

6) Should you choose to add the mascarpone cheese, now is the time. Proceed to plate risotto and duck then drizzle with reduction sauce, and enjoy with a glass of Annie Dyer Pinot Noir.

Notes: As this recipe can be a bit labor intensive, it is best to prepare all ingredients prior to cooking for simultaneous completion. Bring duck breasts to room temperature before cooking.

Download this recipe in PDF format.