Twenty Minute Honey-Glazed Duck Breasts

French Fridays with Dorie

Twenty Minute Honey-Glazed Duck Breasts

For some reason duck is not so much a ‘cook at home’ type dish in the United States but it should be. There are quite a few merits to cooking duck at home but primary among them is that when you do you can have it the way you like it.    I stopped ordering it out because most restaurants seem to think it should be slathered it in sweetness of some sort.    Thats just not my bag. Give me a savory duck any day.

A good savory duck dish reminds me of the way chicken used to taste 20 years ago before the chicken industry turned most grocery market chicken into the mostly tasteless vehicle for sauce we have grown all to familiar with these days.

I realize that Dorie’s twenty-minute honey-glazed duck breast recipe has honey in its title but it is something of a misnomer.  The small amount of honey in this dish is nothing compared to the syrupy, fruity glop some of my local restaurants insist on preparing it with.

Today is a “cooks choice” day for French Fridays with Dorie where the Doristas can choose anything form the book they wanted to cook.   Their selections are something of a Rorschach test of their cooking personalities!    All my selection will reveal is something my fellow Doristas already know:  I’m always late.

Twenty Minute Honey-Glazed Duck Breasts

Twenty Minute Honey-Glazed Duck Breasts

This was a recipe selection designated a couple of weeks ago but one which I was determined to make so I choose it for today.  Vinegar sauces with poultry are a favorite of mine and the light touch here knows its place allowing the rich duck flavor to come through nicely.

The leftovers made a tasty duck salad over greens the next day.

Twenty Minute Honey-Glazed Duck Breasts Twenty Minute Honey-Glazed Duck Breasts Twenty Minute Honey-Glazed Duck Breasts

Twenty Minute Honey-Glazed Duck Breasts

Twenty Minute Honey-Glazed Duck Breasts

This is what you will need:

  • 2 large duck breasts (2 lbs.)
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 T honey
  • juice of one lime

This is how you make it:

  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
  2. Score the duck skin with a sharp knife or razor blade being careful not to cut into the meat itself. Heat a heavy dutch oven or casserole pan. When the pan is fully hot put the breasts skin side down and let cook for eight minutes resisting the urge to move them. Let the skin get brown and crisp. They won't stick if you let them cook and render the fat which will let them release from the pan. Cook 8 minutes and then turn them over for another 3 minutes for rare realizing they will continue to cook after you take them out of the pan.
  3. Take the breasts out of the pan and and wrap gently in aluminum foil to rest and put in the oven on a baking pan to stay warm while you prepare the sauce.
  4. Pour all the fat from the pan except for what sticks to the edges and deglaze quickly with the balsamic, honey, and lime juice. Lower heat while stirring. Remove the chicken from foil and add the duck juices to the deglazed mixture. From here you can thin the sauce with a few tablespoons of chicken stock or enriched it with a pat of butter.
  5. Return the breasts to the pot to heat them through (30 seconds or so) and then slice the breasts and drizzle the sauce over them to serve.


About Trevor Kensey

To be truthful, I don't know what “Sis. Boom. [blog!]" means either. The name implies something explosive just happened I suppose I would like it if each post would make made a small 'boom' in your day or at least a fizzle. Even though a recipe is included with every post I have a hard time calling this a "food blog" or even myself a "food blogger".

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  1. I am glad that you got a chance to make this one – it is so good!

  2. You may be late, but I’m later. My supermarket told me they wouldn’t have duck until this week. I’m waiting for my in-laws to leave before I cook it, b/c, well, I’m cheap. HA! I’m anxious to try this one.

  3. This looks absolutely wonderful, late or not 🙂

  4. I gotta try this recipe-this looks so good and for sure better late than never! It’s on my to make list along with the chocolate mousse for dessert;-)

  5. I’m assuming you boned this duck first, honey. Then applied the sweet and sour glaze, lots of it. Seriously it looks ducky and delicious! And not the least bit gooey. I love your big meat fork, will that be under my tree this year?

  6. It looks delicious! I’m with you – I MUCH prefer savory duck over sweet! Thanks for sharing and Happy Friday!

  7. Gorgeous Savory Duck – what could be better to make at home? I completely agree that restaurants over sweeten duck and generally over sauce just about everything.

    Glad you were able to try this one – I’ve made it and versions of it about 5 times since trying it last month.

    Happy French Friday!

  8. It’s interesting that you pointed out how duck has poultry flavour that chicken no longer does. I guess this must be why I love duck so much! Indeed, everything tastes like chicken if it lacks flavour!

    Love the pink hue of your duck breast. Looks really juicy and cooked just right!

    Yup, after cooking together for over a year, most of us have an inkling of what kind of dishes tickle our fancy. 😉

  9. Looks great and I am glad that you got the chance to try it out again 🙂 Have a nice weekend!

  10. Good idea to make up a missed recipe – I have a few! I’m glad to hear you enjoyed this one. My husband loves Duck, too.

    Have a lovely weekend!

  11. We don’t have duck, only in our holiday season around christmas. But your story sounds and looks delicious, so I might going to try this one out around that time.
    I hope I don’t get to addicted to the duck though, it’s almost impossible to get after christmas.

  12. Ha, ha…yes, I’m pretty transparent! Your duck looks perfect…and it’s now my go to preparation…I’ll just vary the sauces. Hope you had a great Thanksgiving, Trevor!

  13. Lovely breasts :-0
    I miss chicken that tastes like chicken. It seems like you have to eat frog legs or something like that these days to get a food that tastes like chicken…
    I am not sure what picking brussels sprouts says about me. I am not sure I want to know the answer.
    Have a great weekend.

  14. Your duck looks perfectly cooked. I am so glad you took this opportunity to make it. I love your meat fork!

  15. Your post made me laugh! If it is a test and you came in late, I went to the wrong book! So not sure what that says about me!
    I missed this recipe as well, but looks great!

  16. I wonder what it says about me that I meant to make a Dorie dish but changed at the last minute and didn’t do one at all? Oh well. This post says about you that you are juicy and succulent and just right, and just a tiny bit sweet. The right amount. ; )

  17. I’m glad you made this! It did taste pretty delicious. Great post!

  18. Yum, this was a favorite of mine. So happy you were able to do it, better late than never.

  19. you know I absolutely LOVED the sauce on this although I wasn’t too crazy about the duck itself… I’m so glad you loved this one and really, late is nothing when you are enjoying a great dish! What did you pair this with?

  20. Even in my youth, I never had much of a taste for chicken. As far back as I can recall, I’ve hungered for something more substantial and flavorful. “Gamey,” even. Give me a rich, powerful aroma and I just have to get a taste, a mouthful or, even, swallow it whole.

    What you’re offering, in this duck preparation, looks like it might just satisfy that craving.


  21. OK, that’s it! We definitely need to schedule a french cuisine day, and we’ll need to add this recipe to the list along with french macarons. 🙂

  22. Your duck breasts look great! I enjoyed this as well, give me a vinegar sauce anytime over “that sweet glop” as well. The only time I order duck out anymore is in Thai places where it comes in curry. yum.