Muscovy Duck Breast with Red Wine-Vanilla Sauce


Yields: 2 servings
  • 2 Muscovy duck breasts
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • ½ cup red wine, pinot noir
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • ¼ cup chives, sliced
  • ¼ cup tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced


This recipe contains a couple of secrets for getting succulent, moist duck meat. First, cook the meat in the oven with the skin side down so it can protect the meat from the hot skillet. Second, do not overcook the since, like beef, duck is best served rare or medium rare. This unique, vanilla-scented sauce marries beautifully with the duck.1. Preheat oven to 375F.

Using a sharp knife, score the skin only of the duck breast with diagonal cuts, about 1 inch apart.

Season duck generously with salt and pepper.

Place an oven-proof skillet over high heat until very hot. Add the olive oil, then the duck breasts, skin side up. Sear 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until golden brown.

Flip the duck breasts so the skin is facing down. Immediately transfer the pan into the oven for 12 to 14 minutes. Remove the duck from the oven, and onto a plate. Cover with silver foil and let rest for 5 minutes.

To make the sauce, remove some of the fat out of the pan and place over medium heat. Add shallots and sauté 1 to 2 minutes or until translucent. Do not let the shallots brown or they become bitter.

Add the red wine and bring to a boil. Let the wine simmer and reduce for 2 to 3 minutes, until just a couple of tablespoons remain.

Split the vanilla bean in half lengthwise, and scrape out the pods from the center. Add the bean and pods to the pan.

Add chicken stock and bring to a boil. Let mixture cook about 3 minutes for flavors to infuse.

Strain sauce through a fine mesh strainer to remove shallots and vanilla bean.

Add chives and tomatoes to sauce.

Slice the duck breasts into ½ to 1 inch slices, slicing at an angle for a more attractive presentation. Keeping the original shape of the duck breast, transfer the slices to a serving plate and pour sauce over and around the duck.