This pan seared duck breast with cranberry grape sauce comes together so beautifully and is so tasty, perfectly crisp skin and flesh medium-rare.


  • 2 boneless duck breast with skin
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • Ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 strand fresh rosemary
  • 3 to 4 strands fresh thyme
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 cup Cranberry juice
  • 1 star anise pod
  • 1 strand fresh thyme
  • 1 cup halved red seedless grapes
  • 200 to 250 gram Parsnip, peeled and chopped
  • 200 to 250 gram Pumpkin, peeled and chopped
  • 2 tablespoon Butter
  • 1/4 cup Milk
  • Salt, to taste


  1. Score the duck breast. Then rub kosher salt and pepper on both sides and refrigerate while you prepare the sauce.

2. In a small saucepan and on medium heat, melt sugar with water in a small saucepan. Swirling gently until the sugar dissolves and the mixture turns a pale golden color, about 10 minutes.

3. Add the apple cider vinegar, cranberry juice, star anise, fresh rosemary. Let it simmer until the sauce reduces to a consistency that will coat the back of a spoon. Set aside.

4. Note: The sauce will harden as it cools. Return the pan to the heat and cook until the caramel is melted and smooth, 2 to 3 minutes.


5. Steam the pumpkin & parsnip for 10 to 12 minutes, or until tender. Drain the vegetables, add salt, butter, milk and blend to a puree or your desired consistency. Set aside until ready to use.


6. On a cold skillet over low heat, place the duck skin side down and let it render and cook until the skin is crispy, between 5 to 8 minutes.

7. Increase the heat to medium, and continue cooking until the duck begins to sizzle. Continue cooking undisturbed until the skin is browned, crisp, and has rendered most of its fat, another 6 to 8 minutes. If you have a meat thermometer, it should read 54C for rare, 61C for medium and 65C for medium/well done.

8. Rest the duck breast for 10 mins before slicing to serve.

9. In the same pan, spoon off and reserve the fat from the skillet (you can keep and refrigerate this excess duck fat for other recipes).

10. Add the grapes to the skillet and toss with the thyme and a pinch of salt and pepper, for 3 to 4 minutes. Then add the sauce prepared earlier and let it simmer for another 2 to 3 minutes.

11. Glaze the duck breast by brushing the sauce into the cracks of the duck fat. Slice the duck breast and transfer to plate, spoon grapes over top. Spoon sauce over top. Top with any purée of your choice and serve immediately. Enjoy!

Bon appétit!
If you’ve tried the recipe, don’t forget to tag us on instagram at #thespatulaandwok

Published by thespatulaandwok

I am a wife and a mom to two adorable boys. I split my time between school pick-ups and the kitchen. I am also the cook and photographer behind the Spatula and Wok. I am not a professional chef, but i enjoy experimenting recipes and taking overhead tablescapes of sumptuous home cooking!

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