Last night, I seared a duck breast.
In point of fact, I seared the living daylights out of the duck breast: I knew I wanted a hot pan but I went overboard. The skin side, when I turned it, was nearly black.
Another 4 minutes to sear the underside, and then onto the cutting board to rest. This was headed for disaster: it was already cleared for landing. Call in the sauce!
So, I poured out the fat. The burnt bits were burnt and black, but desperate times: I kept them all. I added:
- 3T of cheap balsamic, which vaporized. (Did I mention that the pan was too hot?) and then another splash.
- an ice cube of veal demi
- 3T of honey, mixed with 1T of freshly minced thyme, brought to a simmer and allowed to infuse for ten minutes
After the initial cloud of steam, I let this cook down gently. After five minutes, I went to slice the duck, only to find that the too-hot pan had left the inside too rare. So, I sliced the duck, fanned the sliced into the skillet with the sauce, cooked for a minute on each side, and hoped for the best.
It was pretty good! Interestingly, the sauce was not terribly sweet, and the thyme really helps keep things in balance. The smoky burnt overtones played well with the balsamic and honey.