Pan Roasted Duck Breast

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Pan Roasted Duck Breast with Blackberry, Brandy & Green Peppercorn Sauce over Sweet Corn Grits


ZIN Restaurant & Wine Bar owned by childhood friends Jeff Mall and Scott Silva of Healdsburg, focus on updating and enhancing American regional dishes. Zin's seasonal menus are set to be paired with local wines that feature the unique varietal characteristics of this world-renowned viticultural area. 

Serves 4

For Grits

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 clove garlic, smashed
  • 1 teaspoon Tabasco Sauce
  • 2 ears sweet corn, kernels removed
  • 1 1/2 cups stone-ground, white corn grits

In a medium sauce pot combine water, cream, butter, garlic, Tabasco and corn. Bring to a boil and slowly pour in grits while stirring with a wooden spoon. Reduce heat to low and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Keep warm until ready to serve. 

For Sauce

  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup fresh blackberries
  • 2 cups chicken stock

For Duck

  • 4 (10-ounce) Muscovy duck breasts
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons green peppercorns in brine
  • 1/2 cup brandy

In sauce pot add shallot, vinegar, sugar, blackberries and chicken stock. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook over medium-low heat for 10 minutes. Let cool slightly, purée in blender and strain through fine-mesh strainer. Set aside until duck is ready.

  • Score fat on duck breasts in a cross-hatch pattern without cutting into the flesh. Season both sides with salt and pepper.
  • Place duck breasts fat side down in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Cook for 7-8 minutes. Using tongs, turn breasts over and cook for 4 minutes on other side until medium-rare, or desired doneness. Remove from pan and keep warm while sauce is finished.
  • Drain fat from pan. Add peppercorns to pan. Away from the stove, add the brandy to the pan. Return to heat and bring to a boil. Brandy will ignite in pan. Cook until flames die out. Add blackberry sauce and cook for 3-4 minutes, or until a sauce-like consistency is reached. Season sauce with salt and pepper.
  • Divide grits on 4 plates. Slice duck breast thin and arrange next to grits. Pour sauce around plate and serve.

CHEF'S RECIPE NOTES: The combination of corn and blackberries in this dish captures the last of summer taste sensations before we say adieu until next year, while the duck and grits foretell the flavors of fall.

344 Center Street
Healdsburg, CA
(707) 473-0946

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