Pan Seared Duck Breasts

What to do with all those teal you collected last month? You did bag some, right? The familiar smells of cattails, mosquito repellant, and mouth-watering hot kolaches from the Bay City Shipley Donuts were part of your outing, no doubt.

Three coffees and 90 miles down the road, we strapped on our gear, grabbed the decoys, and lifted the pin out of Old Jack’s kennel. As we sat on dry timber listening to the buzzing insects and imposter divers, a gentle breeze from the south carried a faint noise from a distance. Cutting wings sliced through the breeze as the birds circled and descended upon the open slough.

“Take ‘em, boys!”

It’s all over but the searing:


Served with a mandarin

orange serrano and sherry sauce.

4 breast fillets, skin off, brined for 3-4 hours

1 cup dry sherry

2 Tbs Texas Gourmet Mandarin

Orange Serrano Jelly

1 cube chicken bouillon

1 tsp rosemary leaves, chopped

2 Tbs butter

2-3 cloves garlic

1/4 cup chopped onions

1/4 cup dried apricots, chopped


Remove breasts from brine and pat dry with a paper towel. Rub breasts with crushed garlic. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and set aside.

In a small mixing bowl, combine sherry and Mandarin Orange Serrano Jelly and set aside. In a 10-inch, seasoned skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add breast halves and sear for 3-4 minutes.

Turn over and add onions. Cook 2 to 3 minutes or until meat is lightly browned. Remove from skillet. Add sherry grilling mixture to the pan, gently scraping browned bits off the bottom to blend.

Add garlic, apricots, and rosemary. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer for 3-4 minutes. Return breasts to skillet and cook for 5-7 minutes or until meat is desired doneness and liquid slightly reduced. To serve, carve breast halves crosswise into slices.

Fan slices out slightly on a plate. Top with pan sauce. Serve with wild rice and favorite sides. Serves four.

Recipe by Brian Slaven