Peppered Duck Breast

With a distinctive richness all its own, duck breast is a winning match for our OKD Four Red Blend.


  • 3 Muscovy duck breasts, about 1lb each
  • salt
  • 1 Tbsp black peppercorns, freshly crushed
  • 4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 3 Thyme sprigs, roughly chopped
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 large shallot, sliced
  • 1 tsp tomato paste
  • ¼ cup plus 2 Tbsp Trefethen OKD Four Red Blend
  • 2 cups unsalted chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons potato starch


  • 1Remove the tenderloins (thin strips of meat on undersides of the duck breast) and reserve for sauce. With a sharp knife, trim away any gristle and excess fat from the undersides and edges of the breasts. Score skin in a diamond-shaped pattern, taking care not to cut into the meat. Lightly sprinkle salt on both sides and rub with crushed black peppercorns. Sprinkle with garlic and thyme, cover, and leave at room temperature for an hour. For deeper flavor, refrigerate for several hours or overnight, then return to room temperature to cook.
  • 2Heat 1 Tbsp of the unsalted butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add shallot and reserved duck tenderloins. Let them brown well, stirring occasionally, 5-8 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and a small thyme sprig and let them fry for a minute, then add 1/4 cup wine and chicken broth. Raise heat to a brisk simmer and let liquid reduce to about 1 1/4 cups, about 10 minutes.
  • 3Strain sauce and return to heat. Add remaining 2 Tbsp wine and cook for 1 minute more. Dissolve potato starch in 2 Tbsp cold water and stir into sauce. Whisk in the remaining butter. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
  • 4Heat a large heavy-bottomed skillet over medium heat. When hot, lay in the duck breasts skin side down until sizzling. Reduce heat to low and cook for 7-10 minutes, checking to make sure skin does not brown too quickly. Using tongs, turn breasts over and allow bottom sides to cook, 3 minutes for rare, 4 to 5 minutes for medium-rare. Transfer to a warm platter and let rest for 10 minutes.
  • 5To serve, slice thinly and on a slight bias. Serve with the sauce and our OKD Four Red Blend. Enjoy!

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