[serves 4] 4 duck breasts 5 tablespoons balsamic vinegar salt and pepper, to taste extra balsamic vinegar, for drizzling (optional)


  • Using a sharp knife, score the duck skin (fat) with diagonal parallel slashes 1/2 inch apart to make a diamond pattern, being careful not to pierce through to the flesh.
  • Pour the balsamic vinegar into a shallow dish just wide enough to fit the breasts in one layer. Add the duck, flesh side down. Cover and leave to marinate for minimum of 20 minutes at room temperature. If marinating for longer, refrigerate, but try and make sure the duck is at room temperature when being cooked.
  • Heat a non-stick pan over medium-high heat. Add duck, fat side down and cook until crispy, about 5 minutes.
  • After the 5 minutes, carefully pour the rendered fat from the pan and turn the duck breasts over and continue to cook to liking.
  • Remove duck from pan to cutting board and slice thinly against the grain.


  • You can make additional balsamic sauce by heating in a small pan a small about of balsamic vinegar (about twice as much as you need) until it begins to boil. As soon as it boils, take off heat and start stirring. Place back on gentle heat, reduce volume by half. The more reduced, the more 'sticky' the sauce!  Very tasty.
  • After rendering fat, the additional cooking time needed for the duck breast (on average) is approximately 5 minutes more for rare, 8 for medium rare, and 10 minutes for well done.

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