HONEY ROASTED DUCK BREAST WITH APPLE WALNUT COUS COUS
8 large ducks- breasts and legs removed
1 large carrot- rough chopped
1 small onion- rough chopped
2 stalks of celery- rough chopped
2 bay leaves
1 cup cous cous
¼ cup toasted walnuts pieces- chopped
1 large, firm tart apple- peeled and finely chopped (Granny Smith is good)
1 tsp olive oil
1 ¼ cup chicken stock
Salt and pepper
Vegetable of choice
2 tablespoons organic honey
- Take the duck carcasses with the breasts and legs removed and place them on a baking sheet. Set aside the breasts and store the legs for other uses.
- Place the baking tray with the duck carcasses in the oven pre heated to 400 degrees. Allow the bones to brown well.
- Remove the duck carcasses and place them in a tall stock pot. Deglaze the baking sheet with a little water and add it to the stock pot.
- Add the rough chopped carrot, onion, celery and bay leaves to the stock pot and fill with cold water to cover the carcasses. Set on the stove and bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to a gentle simmer and, using a ladle or large spoon, carefully remove any scum and fat that comes to the surface. Repeat this process several times over 4 hours.
- After 4 hours, strain the stock into a clean pot and place it back on the stove and allow the stock to reduce to about 1 ½ cups. This will take several hours. When reduced remove from heat and set aside.
- On a clean cutting board lay out the duck breasts skin side up. Using a very sharp knife make long slits in the duck skin ensuring not to cut into the breast itself. Return the breasts to the refrigerator.
- In a heavy sauté pan heat the olive oil until just smoking. Add the chopped apple and brown briefly. Transfer to a stainless steel mixing bowl.
- Add the toasted walnut pieces and the cous cous to the roasted apples.
- Place the chicken stock on the stove in a small sauce pan and bring to a vigorous boil. Pour the boiling stock on top of the cous cous mixture and stir quickly. Cover the bowl immediately with plastic wrap and allow it to stand for 20 minutes.
- Heat a large sauté pan on the stove top. Salt and pepper the scored duck breasts and place them in the hot pan skin side down. Reduce heat a little and allow the fat from the skin to render out and become crisp.
- When the skin is crisp, turn the breasts skin side up and pour the honey over them. Add the reduced duck stock and place in an oven preheated to 350 degrees. Allow the breasts to roast for 5 to 10 minutes depending on the degree of doneness desired.
- Remove the breasts from the oven and place them on a clean cutting board. Allow them to rest for 3 minutes. If the pan sauce is too thin place the pan back on the stove top and reduce to desired consistency.
- Divide the warm cous cous among 4 dinner plates. Cut each breast once on a bias and place four pieces on each plate.
- Spoon ¼ of the pan sauce over the duck breasts on each plate and serve with a vegetable of your choice.