I usually find plum sauce too sweet for me but the sauce for this dish is one of the nicest sauces I have tasted; sweet and spicy yet with a sharpness that goes so well with the duck. It is also very easy to make. One benefit is that it can be made a couple of days in advance if necessary and stored in the fridge.
Such a simple salad to make, yet so tasty. I did add slightly more chopped red chilli and spring onion than stated in the recipe but this can be adjusted according to taste. My duck was slightly over-cooked unfortunately (it should have been pinker in the middle) but it did not detract from the deliciousness of this dish.
2 duck breast fillets, skin on
1 tablespoon Chinese five-spice
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
1 Little Gem lettuce
2 small/medium courgettes, julienned or spiralised
Juice of 1 lime
1 spring onion, finely chopped
1 red chilli, de-seeded and finely chopped
FOR THE SAUCE:
5 ripe medium plums, stoned and chopped
1cm piece fresh root ginger, finely grated
1 garlic clove, crushed
½ to 1 red chilli, de-seeded and finely chopped
2 tablespoons tamari
1 tablespoon clear honey or maple syrup
Add all ingredients for the sauce to a medium saucepan.
Bring to the boil and simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Blitz until smooth using either a stick blender or a Nutribullet (or similar).
Score the skin of the duck in a diamond pattern; season with salt and freshly ground black pepper and rub all over with the five-spice. Put them in a cold fry-pan, skin side down, then turn the heat to high. When the skins are crisp, turn the heat down to medium and cook for a further 10 minutes, turning it over to both sides until it is cooked to your liking.
The fillets should be pink inside but not raw.
Transfer the fillets to a plate to cool.
In a clean, dry fry pan toast the sesame seeds over a high heat until browned. Shake the pan frequently to prevent them burning.
Once the duck has rested, put the fillets back into the pan and sauté them with their juices for a few minutes. Transfer to a board and cut into slices.
Break up the lettuce leaves and put them into a bowl. Throw over the raw courgettes and top with the sliced duck. Drizzle over the plum sauce and lime juice and scatter over the spring onion, chilli and toasted sesame seeds.
Any sauce leftover could be used as a marinade for meat, especially for the BBQ.
Thanks to Sainsburys magazine for this tasty recipe.
NB: All the photographs used in this blog have been taken by me, and are of food I have prepared myself.