Tagged: potatoes

Duck Breast with Cherry Sauce, Parsnip Mash and Pointed Cabbage

 

I love duck, roasted, crispy but mainly duck breast, pan fried. One of it’s main benefits is that it always goes well with a sauce, and a tart fruity sauce is best.

But isn’t duck expensive? Well if you shop at Tesco, yes. But guess where I found a very cheap duck breast at? – yes, Lidl. These buggers are BIG. At Tesco you get 2 in a 400g pack for £7. At Lidl you get just the one 400g breast for under a fiver. They are frozen so perfect to get some in for just when you francy some.

 

And why pointy cabbage? Well basically it’s what the missus brought home cheap from M&S. I would usually use Savoy cabbage but we use what we have, dont we! I won’t give a list of ingredients as there is nothing that you won’t have in and the rest is in the title of the dish.

First thing you need to do is defrost the duck and then score the fat by making a criss cross pattern in the skin, season the fatty side and place on a plate for later.

Next take a couple of spuds and a couple of parsnips, peel them, put them in a pan and just cover with water. Cut the potatoes small as the parsnips cook very quickly and you want them to be done at roughly the same time. Bring to the boil and cook until soft enough to mash.

While the spuds & parsnips are cooking, prepare your cabbage. I like to cut it into thin strips, place in a pan, add some water – but not so much that you cover the cabbage, add a pinch of salt, put on the lid and bring to the boil for a minute or 2, so still slightly undercooked. Then drain the hot water off and then rinse your cabbage through a few times with cold water to stop the cooking process and leave in cold water till later when you can bring it back to life.

You can start on the sauce. I used some cherries in a jar that I also used for my Black Forest Cheesecake. Blitz around half a jar with some of the syrup.

Put the mixture into a small saucepan and add a glug of Red Wine, a little sugar to sweeten the cherries a bit, and a little of your homemade chicken stock and bring to the boil and reduce to a nice thick double cream consistency. You can now leave this till plating up.

Now cook the duck. Put into a frying pan, fat side down on a medium heat, no need for oil as the fat will release loads as it renders down. Fry it on this side for 10-12 minutes then turn over and cook for another 5 minutes. Make sure the edges get done by fryng the duck with the edges touching the side of the pan.

While this is cooking you make your mash. Add a knob of butter and a splash of milk to the drained spuds & parsnips – add a little sea salt too. Now mash and test for seasoning, add some more salt if you want, but not too much. Leave in the same hot pan till serving.

When the duck is done, you want it pink in the middle. Trust yourself, keep poking it till you feel satisfied that it isn’t raw in the middle or even worse, that it has gone dry and overcooked. Put it on a warm plate to rest. This does two things, the meat relaxes so it will be tender and secondly, juices will leech out which you can use in the sauce. Collect the duck fat from the breast to use next time you want roast spuds for a sunday lunch, but  leave a smidgen to use with the cabbage

While the Duck is resting you need to reheat the cabbage . Finely chop a clove of garlic and add to the pan the duck was cooked in, I also added a finely chopped slice of bacon and fry gently and when the bacon is cooked throw in the cabbage and mix till cooked through.

Heat up your sauce and add the juices from the rested duck and a little knob of butter, it makes the sauce shiny! Now plate up. A good dollop of mash in the middle of the plate, cabbage on the side and slice the duck breast into half centimetre slices and lay on top of the mash. Drizzle the sauce over and around the duck and there you go. Top quality scran for less than £3 each for 2 people.

Right, that’s my Cherries used up, but I still have more Duck left.

Try it and let us know how you got on. Was lovely with some Shiraz.  Yours, Mugsie.


Pork Loin Steak with Soy, Honey and Ginger Sauce

For a steak, you cannot get cheaper than pork. I recently bought a whole boneless loin from Tesco which was a half price offer for £9. I think it’s main role in death was to be as a large roasting joint. I sliced it up into 16 Loin Steaks. As long as you have a sharp knife, you don’t exactly have to be a master butcher to do this. If you don’t fancy risking your fingertips there are always many deals for pork loin steaks or chops at all supermarkets.
I never used to fancy pork, as in the past it was always a dry horrible chunk on my plate covered with gravy! Gravy is for Sunday, or on chips after a good night on the lash. [Yes, southerners, on chips!]

I have gone down the route of frying the pork as it ends up juicier and all the flavours that leech out are still in the pan that you will use to make the sauce. I like to make a good mash to go with it.
To me, a good mash will consist of mashed potatoes, butter and milk with salt and a twist of pepper.
Choose your own vegetables for this dish, it’s up to you.

Ingredients:

Pork Loin Steak
Dark Soy Sauce
Honey
Root Ginger
Potatoes
Butter
Milk
Salt & Pepper
Cornflour

What you need, Well, it’s all there in the title but with some cornflour to thicken. Don’t be put off by ginger. It’s easy to use and stores well for a long time -long enough to use in the following weeks to make curries and stir fries. You can make this sauce without the ginger and it tastes fab too, but the ginger adds a different flavour to the sauce which I’m sure you will like.

Get your mash ready, it will stay warm in the pan. Get your veg on the go, they only take minutes. Now get your cornflour solution ready, by taking a good spoon of cornflour in a cup and slowly add cold water whilst stirring. Add enough water to make the amount of sauce you want.

Take an inch of ginger and take the outside rind off. No skullduggery here, cut it off with a knife and then finely chop the ginger up as small as you can. You could even grate it if your grater is sharp enough.

Now the pork steak. Add a knob of butter to a frying pan with a glug of oil to stop the butter burning and cook the steaks for around 4 minutes on each side. That’s it! Take the steaks and put them on a plate to let them rest a little.

Now to the pan with the buttery, oily juices add the ginger and then add a few splashes of dark soy sauce, followed by a couple of spoons of honey. Your choice, but why use your best Royal Jelly honey for this.
Add the cornflour solution (which you will have to stir up again) and, whilst on the heat, keep stirring.

Do not stop stirring as the sauce will thicken with the heat. If it gets too thick, add more water. And then last of all, add the juices that have come out of the rested pork.

I love this as a nice midweek meal. Just make sure there is enough sauce, it should be all over the plate.I think the Mash is the longest process here so it is a very quick and easy meal to make. And also you’re now on your way to a life of making sauces.

YUM YUM

Oink Oink

Mugsie