Duck Breast with Radicchio and Bitter Greens
A full-bodied red wine such as a Barbera from Italy or a Syrah from France wonderfully complements the rich flavor of the duck and the bitter flavor of the greens.
- 3 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp. Champagne vinegar
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper, plus more, to
- 2 Tbs. olive oil
- 2 small heads radicchio
- 1 cup baby arugula leaves
- 1/2 cup watercress, red Asian mustard greens or
dandelion leaves (bite-size pieces) or
additional whole baby arugula leaves
- 2 Tbs. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 1 whole boneless duck breast
In a bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, vinegar, 1/2 tsp. of the salt and the 1/4 tsp. pepper. While whisking, slowly drizzle in the olive oil to make a thick vinaigrette.
Using a sharp knife, cut away the hard white core from the base of the radicchio. Cut the head lengthwise into slices 1/4 inch thick, then separate the layers and remove the hard V-shaped core. Put the radicchio in the bowl with the vinaigrette. Add the arugula, watercress and parsley and gently mix. Set aside.
Pat the duck breast dry. In a fry pan over high heat, warm the remaining 1/2 tsp. salt. When it is hot, add the duck breast, skin side down. Reduce the heat to medium-high and cook until crisp and golden brown on one side, 6 to 7 minutes. Turn the duck breast over and cook the other side until lightly browned, about 4 minutes. Cover the pan and cook until the duck breast is medium-rare, 3 to 4 minutes more. Drain briefly on paper towels.
Transfer the duck breast to a cutting board and use a knife to separate the breast halves. Cut each breast half crosswise into slices 1/4 inch thick.
Heap the radicchio mixture in a bowl or on a platter, fluffing up the middle, and arrange the duck slices on top, giving them a final sprinkling of pepper. Serve while the duck is still warm. Serves 4.