I really like the meat from a duck, especially the breasts. If you cook it to long it will dry out, but served medium-rare to medium is the most tender juicy piece of meat you can get. Since I got my Anova sous-vide cooker I have been longing to cook the duck breast sous-vide. Today was the day.
- 2 Duck Breasts
Wash you hands very thoroughly, when handling the duck. You don't want to cross-contaminate other foods or the duck. So keep your work station clean and tidy all the time.
Refrigerate duck breasts on paper towel-lined plate overnight. This will allow some of the juices to evaporate, and you get a firmer breast in the end.
Have the vacuum bags pre-sealed in one end (doh!). Fold the rim out, so you don't get any grease or water on the place you need to seal the bags. Have the salt and pepper you want to use in small bowls, so you don't get any "duck" in the salt you're not using.
Take the duck breasts out and score the skin in a harlequin pattern with a sharp knife. Season them with salt and pepper. Place them in the vacuum bags, vacuum and seal them. (I seal them twice just to be on the safe side.)
Place them in 135℉ (57℃) water bath for at least 45 minutes and up to 3 hours. I stopped after 2 hours, no need to go the limit with this delicate meat. Remove duck from bags and dry thoroughly with paper towels.
Place breasts skin side-down in heavy-bottomed non-stick or cast iron skillet and set over high heat until sizzling, about 2 minutes, then reduce heat to medium and cook until golden brown and crisp, about 5 minutes. Make sure that you get good contact between skillet and the skin. You won't need any oil, the fat from the duck will render and give you plenty of fat for the searing. Flip the breasts and cook the other side until slightly seared.