Mazzio's Smoked Duck with Tangerine-Rosemary Salad

James Mazzio's sugar-and-tea mixture adds a wonderful fragrance to the duck; allow a day for marinating. If you want to save time, buy smoked duck breasts at your local specialty food shop.


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  • Servings: 4

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smoked duck
  • 1 cup fresh tangerine or orange juice
  • 5 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsulphured molasses
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely chopped rosemary
  • Zest of 2 tangerines or oranges, cut into very thin strips
  • 1/4 teaspoon each freshly ground white pepper and black pepper
  • Four 5- to 6-ounce boneless duck breasts, with skin
  • 1/2 cup long-grain white rice
  • 1/4 cup loose black tea, such as Ceylon
tangerine salad
  • 1/2 cup fresh tangerine or orange juice
  • 1/2 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Champagne vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced rosemary
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 large tangerines or oranges
  • 4 cups (packed) mixed tender greens, such as Boston lettuce and mâche

How to make this recipe

  1. In a shallow glass or ceramic baking dish, combine the tangerine juice with 3 tablespoons of the brown sugar, the molasses, kosher salt, rosemary, tangerine zest and white and black peppers. Add the duck breasts and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate overnight, turning occasionally.

  2. Line a wok and its lid with heavy-duty foil, allowing a 6-inch overhang around both the wok and lid. Add the rice, tea and the remaining 2 tablespoons of brown sugar to the wok and stir to mix. Set the wok over moderate heat and cook until wisps of smoke rise up from the smoking mixture.

  3. Pat the duck breasts dry with paper towels and arrange them on a 9-inch round cake rack. Carefully, set the rack in the wok over the smoking mixture. Cover with the lid and crimp the foil tightly all around. Smoke the duck breasts over moderate heat for about 18 minutes, or until the meat is medium rare. Transfer the duck to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes.

  4. In a blender, combine the tangerine juice, shallot, vinegar, honey and rosemary. Blend until smooth. With the machine on, gradually drizzle in the olive oil until the dressing is smooth and slightly thickened. Transfer the tangerine dressing to a large bowl and season with salt and pepper. Using a small, sharp knife, peel the tangerines. Cut in between the membranes to release the sections.

  5. Carefully remove the skin from the duck and thinly slice the meat diagonally across the grain. Add the greens to the large bowl and toss with the dressing. Mound the salad on plates and scatter the tangerine sections on top. Arrange the sliced duck alongside the salad and serve.

Make Ahead

The smoked duck can be refrigerated overnight.

Suggested Pairing

Meaty duck breasts need a concentrated red; for this recipe, the wine also must have enough acerbic tannins to check the sweet notes of the molasses marinade. That's a Bordeaux.

Contributed By Photo © Maura McEvoy Published July 1999

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