Pan Fried Duck Breast, Red Cabbage Puree, Kale

So, this is my first recipe of the new look Gourmet Dough. I decided to kick it off with a simple but tasty recipe that uses great Irish produce that are in season right now. This recipe also gives you an idea into the kind of dishes you can expect to feature on the blog – stylish, flavourful, modern dishes that use only a handful of quality ingredients.

The puree is fragrant and has a powerful kick to it that goes wonderfully with the duck. The kale makes this a complete dish (lets face it, it wouldn’t be much of a dish if it was just duck and puree now would it?) and brings the duck and puree together into a lovely mouthful and the pickled red cabbage adds crunch. I used a fantastic method to cook the kale which I use to cook a lot of vegetables, particularly green vegetables. Cooking vegetables in a mixture of butter and water retains much more of the flavour than if they were boiled and also gives a nice coating of butter, always a plus for flavour.


Puree: Slowly sweat one finely sliced red onion in some oil and butter over a low heat in a medium sized saucepan. Shred half a head of red cabbage and add into the pan. Add in a very generous splash of port, balsamic vinegar and a splash of red wine vinegar into the pan. Cover and slowly braise until the cabbage is cooked through, around 30 minutes. Keep the pan topped up with more port if it gets too dry. Blitz the cabbage in a blender with enough liquid to make a thick puree.

Pickled Red Cabbage: To pickle the cabbage, heat 250 ml red wine vinegar with 175 g white sugar until the sugar dissolves. Take off the heat and add thin slices of red cabbage. Leave in the pickle for a minimum of 30 minutes or as long as you have.

Duck: Score the skin in a criss cross fashion and generously season the skin all over with salt. After about 15 minutes, dry the skin with kitchen paper. Lay the duck skin side down in a cold pan without any oil and place on a medium to high heat. Cook the duck until the skin gets a lovely golden brown colour all over and then flip. Cook flesh side down for 30 seconds, flip back over so that it’s skin side down and place into a 180°C  oven to cook for about 5 minutes. Allow the duck to rest for 5 minutes before slicing.

Kale: Braise the kale in a mixture of butter and water for about 5 – 10 minutes until just cooked. Drain on kitchen paper to absorb the excess butter.

To Serve: Place two tablespoons of puree in the middle of each plate. Top with some kale. Slice the duck breast and place on top and then arrange some of the pickled cabbage around.


Good: The puree was very nice and is a great accompaniment to the duck. You will want plenty of it so be generous, this is not the time to be doing smears or fancy dots of puree.

Bad: Overall it’s a very nice little tasty dish. Unfortunately, I left the duck in the oven for too long and so it did overcook a small bit .



2 comments to Pan Fried Duck Breast, Red Cabbage Puree, Kale

  • Paula Garvey  says:

    A “quacking” good dish Evan!

  • Evan O' Ceallaigh  says:

    Haha thanks Paula, it is a tasty dish alright. I can assure you too that not all of my dishes will be so purple in colour.

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