Roast Duck Breast with Fresh Cherries and Pomegranate Dressing

12:44 am on 10 December 2005

(Serves 6)


  • 4-5 duck breasts, skin scored on the diagonal
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped thyme
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 tablespoons sour cherry syrup
  • juice of 2 limes plus zest of 1 lime
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 125 mls olive oil
  • 300 grams cherries, pitted
  • 1 pomegranate, rolled on bench to release seeds from the membrane


Preheat the oven to 200ºC.

Combine the thyme and oil and rub well into both sides of the duck. Season with salt and black pepper and set aside until ready to cook.

Place the sour cherry syrup, lime juice, zest, chilli, garlic and oil in a bowl and whisk together. Season. Stir in the cherries. Cut the pomegranate in half through the equator and over a sieve scoop out the seeds, making sure you pick out all of the membrane. Add the juice and seeds to the cherry dressing.

Heat a little oil in a large sauté pan and when medium hot add the duck, skin side down. Cook until the skin is a good golden colour, turn over and cook for 1 minute. Transfer the duck to a shallow baking tray and place in the oven. Roast for 6-8 minutes then remove from the oven and place the duck on paper towels to mop up any excess fat. Put the cherry dressing in a dish large enough to take the duck breast in one layer. Add the duck and turn to coat. Allow to sit in the dressing for at least 10 minutes.

To serve: Cut each duck breast into long diagonal slices, arrange on serving plates and spoon over the cherry dressing. Accompany with asparagus or green beans.

Suggested Wines to Go With Today's Recipe


(Central Otago)

Carrick Unravelled

Sleeping Dogs

Akarua The Gullies

Mt Michael Bessies Block

Central Otago Wine Co.

Gibbston Valley