Roasted Duck with Pickled Red Cabbage & Figs

Serves 4


  • 4 x 180-200g duck breasts, skin scored
  • salt and pepper
  • olive oil, for cooking
  • 2 figs, cut into wedges
  • 1 small handful of endive leaves
  • 1 small handful flat-leaf parsley


  • 1 small red cabbage, finely sliced
  • 100g sea salt
  • 200ml red wine vinegar
  • 50ml balsamic vinegar
  • 100ml red wine
  • 300g caster sugar
  • 1 star anise, crushed
  • 1t coriander seeds, crushed
  • 1t juniper berries, crushed
  • 1t black peppercorns, crushed
  • 6 cloves, crushed
  • 1t dried chilli flakes 


  • olive oil for cooking
  • 500g duck wings
  • 6 golden shallots, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4cm piece ginger, sliced
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3star anise
  • 2 juniper berries
  • 1t mustard seeds
  • 100ml port
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • salt and pepper


  1. To make the Pickled Cabbage: mix the cabbage with the sea salt in a bowl, cover and set aside for 4 hours.  Rinse under cold water and drain well.  Set aside in a bowl.
  2. Combine the vinegars, red wine and 50ml of water in a saucepan and heat over high heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until syrupy.  Add the spices and leave to infuse for 5 minutes over low-medium heat, then strain the liquid into the bowl with the cabbage.  Mix well and refrigerate overnight.
  3. To make the Spiced Duck Jus: heat a little oil over medium heat in a large saucepan and cook the duck wings for about 15 minutes, or until golden.  Add the shallot, garlic, herbs and spices, and cook for 3-4 minutes until fragrant.  
  4. Increase the intensity of the heat to high and add the port, stirring the bottom of the pan to incorporate the flavours into the liquid..  Cook for 2-3 minutes, then add the chicken stock.  
  5. Cook for 40 minutes over medium heat, then strain, keeping the liquid, and discarding the solids.
  6. Heat strained liquid on a medium-high heat for approximately 10 minutes reducing to a sauce consistency.
  7. To Cook the Duck Breast: Preheat the oven to 200 ºC.  Season the duck.
  8. Heat the oil in an oven-proof fry-pan, and add the duck breasts, skin side down.  Cook for 4-5 minutes, then turn over.  Cook for a further 1-2 minutes.  Turn the duck again, skin side down, and transfer the duck breast to the oven.  Cook for approximately 6 minutes.  
  9. Remove the duck breasts, and rest on a warm plate under foil before slicing each breast evenly.
  10. Meanwhile, heat the pickled cabbage in a saucepan over low heat to warm through.
  11. To Serve: spoon cabbage onto each plate.  Top with sliced duck breast, and drizzle with spiced duck jus, and garnish with a few fig wedges, endive and parsley leaves.