|Duck Breast Salad. Add Black Sesame Seeds for decoration.|
Go straight to recipe here:
We've been back from holidays in Cairns for a just over a week now and I am slowly getting back into a much needed routine.We returned to a broken and thawed out freezer which wasn't pleasant, but the following day we went refrigerator and freezer shopping, and now I am relishing in filling it with precooked meals, frozen tomato sauces as it is tomato season, and other meat bargains as they appear. It is a slow process however the new freezer which is beautiful, efficient and tidy, will pay for itself in the long run. There has also been a lot of gardening to do, and as it is warming up in North Queensland that is now an early morning or late afternoon activity.
It has taken a whole week but I now enjoying being back in the kitchen. When Summer starts, light, tasty and nutritious meals often with an Asian influence seem appropriate and this recipe is perfect. I have made the salad twice over the weekend for dinners and I just love the subtle Japanese flavours of the dressing. In fact all of my favourite taste sensations are in this salad, marrying well with the crunch of the red cabbage and the Japanese inspired dressing. When combined with the Duck Breast, this becomes a perfect dinner party dish.
3 x 150g-200g fresh duck breasts, skin on (or 4 if you are expecting really hungry guests)
2 x 90g bundles of soba noodles
3 cups of finely shredded red cabbage
3 spring onions, sliced on the diagonal
1-2 medium red chillies, sliced thinly on the diagonal
1 cup coriander leaves
1 tbsp. black sesame seeds (Available from Asian supermarkets)
1/2 cup roasted cashews or or almonds for extra crunch (optional)
sea salt flakes
Shiro Miso Dressing (White Miso)
1/4 cup tamari (or use soy sauce instead)
2 tbsp lime juice
3 tsp shiro miso
2 tsp honey
1 tbsp mirin
2 tsp rice wine vinegar
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1-2 tsp freshly grated ginger
Cooking the duck:
Score the skin of each duck breast diagonally, and sprinkle with sea salt flakes. If you have time, pour boiling water over the skin and place, uncovered, in the refrigerator overnight. According to Maggie Beer, this allows the pores to open and helps the fat under the skin to render beautifully during the cooking. However if you are short of time, just 10 minutes does help.
Preheat the oven to 200 deg.C. Heat a heavy based frying pan over a high heat until very hot. Season the duck breasts with salt and pepper and place skin-side down in the pan to sear. Leave until well browned, then turn over and sear the other side for 1 minute. Transfer to the oven and cook for another 4 minutes, then remove and leave to rest covered, skin side down, in a warm place for a least 5 minutes.Cut into 1 cm thick slices.
Meanwhile prepare the noodles according to packet directions and drain and rinse very thoroughly and allow to cool.
Make the miso dressing by whisking all the ingredients in a jug until smooth.
To assemble the salad, place the duck, noodles, cabbage, cucumber, onion, chilli, coriander, and dressing in a large bowl.Toss until well combined. Scatter with black sesame seeds and nuts just before serving.