PAN SEARED DUCK BREAST WITH SESAME SOBA NOODLES

Total Time: 45-90 minutes, Serves 2

Duck Ingredients

  • 2 Boneless Duck Breasts

Soba Noodle Ingredients

  • 1 Package(1 pound) Dried or Fresh Soba Noodles (cooked and chilled)
  • 1 Medium-Sized Cucumber, julienned
  • ½ c Roasted, Salted Peanuts, roughly chopped
  • ½ Bunch Cilantro, (picked whole with tender stems)
  • ½ Bunch Scallions, (whites and greens sliced thin)

Sesame Vinaigrette

  • 2 tablespoon Sesame Oil
  • 4 tablespoon Soy Sauce
  • 2 tablespoon Rice Wine Vinegar
  • 2 tablespoon Smooth Peanut Butter
  • 1 tablespoon Sugar
  • 2 tablespoon Toasted Sesame Seeds
  • 1 tablespoon Minced Garlic
  • 1 tablespoon Minced Ginger

Preparation

  • Score the duck in a cross-hatch pattern with a sharp knife creating ¼-½ inch diamonds or squares in the skin. Be careful not to cut too deep, you should not come into contact with the meat, just the very surface of the skin. This will allow the fat to render out properly and create very crispy skin.
  • Season the duck breast generously with salt and allow them to come to room temperature for about 30 minutes.
  • Whisk together the ingredients for the sesame vinaigrette, starting with the smooth peanut butter to thin it out.
  • Make sure the vinaigrette is smooth with the peanut butter and sugar fully dissolved. You can add a little water if the dressing is too thick for your liking.
  • Mix the cooked and chilled soba noodles with the julienned cucumber, 2/3rds of the chopped peanuts, and half of the sliced scallions.
  • Pour half of the vinaigrette over the soba noodles and mix thoroughly. Add the rest of the vinaigrette as needed. Set the noodles aside in the fridge, they will soak up some of the dressing as they sit.
  • Begin to heat a large cast-iron skillet (a non-stick pan will also work) over medium-high heat. Add in about a teaspoon of canola oil, the edges of the pan should start to smoke slightly.
  • Place the duck breasts in the pan skin side down. Once the breasts begin to sizzle in the pan, lower the heat to medium.
  • One of the most consistent ways to pan-sear a medium-rare duck breast with crispy skin is to cook it almost entirely skin side down. 
  • Once the skin is golden brown and crispy (about 10-12 minutes), flip the duck breast over and turn the burner off. The residual heat from the pan will continue to gently cook the duck breast for about 3-5 minutes longer.
  • You can use a meat thermometer to be absolutely certain. The duck should be removed from heat when the thickest part of the breast is between 118 and 120 degrees Fahrenheit for medium-rare.
  • Allow the duck to rest off of the heat for about five minutes.
  • To serve, thinly slice the duck (it’s easier to slice with the skin side down). Shingle the duck breast over the dressed noodles and garnish with the sliced scallions, cilantro, more sesame seeds, and remaining peanuts.