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smoked duck salad recipe

Smoked Duck Salad with Roasted Stone Fruit


Smoking is a great way to preserve food and it tastes amazing.

  • Serves: 6 |
    6 servings
  • Difficulty:

  • Prep Time : 2:45 hours |
  • Cook Time : 12 mins
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Cure for the Duck

250 g coarse salt

250 g granulated white sugar

zest of 1 orange

zest of 1 lemon

2 tsp (10 ml) black pepper corns

2 tsp (10 ml) juniper berries dried

a few thyme sprigs, picked

a small handful of fresh sage leaves

100 g onion, medium diced

100 g carrot, medium diced

2 (320 g each) large duck breasts (trimmed and scored skin on)

Roasted Stone Fruit

2 semi-firm peaches (cut in eighths, stone removed)

2 semi-firm nectarines (cut in eighths, stone removed)

6 semi-firm apricots (cut in quarters, stone removed)

13 C (80 ml) maple syrup

a pinch of sea salt

several sprigs of thyme (kept whole and washed)


mixed salad leaves to serve 6

handful of carrot tops (greenery)

handful of rocket shoots

handful of mustard cress

For the Smoking

1 medium size oven roasting tray

1 equally sized baking resting rack (which can fit on top of the oven roasting tray)

200 g apple wood chips (your local butcher will be able to supply you with this)

tin foil

Curing the duck

In a medium mixing bowl, combine the salt and the sugar and set aside. Place the rest of the ingredients for curing the duck (except the duck breast) into a food processor with the blade attachment. Lightly pulse until all of the ingredients are roughly chopped.

Combine the roughly chopped ingredients with the salt and sugar mixture. Mix the ingredients very well by gently rubbing together between your fingers.

When well mixed lay half of the cure mixture on a small tray. Place the trimmed duck breast on top of the mixture. Cover the top of the duck breast with the remaining mixture, so that the entire duck breast is covered.

Cover with cling wrap and leave in the fridge for 1 hour to cure.

Roasted Stone Fruit

Preheat the oven to 180 °C.

Marinate in the the maple syrup and sea salt.

Lay the thyme on a roasting tray. Place the marinated stone fruit onto the thyme. Roast uncovered for 5–7 minutes until the stone fruit softens slightly. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tray.

When the roasted stone fruit has cooled down, gently remove the fruit from the tray and set aside for assembling (be careful not to break the fruit).

Strain the thyme and roasting juices from the tray, saving the juices for use in the dressing.


Combine the salad leaves gently.

Place the shoots in iced water for 15 minutes. Remove from the ice bath and gently lay on kitchen towel to drain. This will crisp up the leaves giving an attractive look and a fresh, vibrant texture to the salad. Set aside.


After an hour, rub all of the excess cure mixture off the duck breast (discard the cure mixture). Gently wash the duck breast under running cold water, rubbing off any excess cure. Completely dry the breasts with kitchen towel.

When the breasts are completely dry, lay the duck on the baking rack, spaced out evenly. Place uncovered in the fridge for an hour to form a light crust on the outside of the duck.

For the Smoking

While the duck is drying, set up your home-made smoker.

Preheat the oven to 180 °C.

Spread the apple wood chips evenly over the base of the roasting tray. Tear off two pieces of tin foil that will completely cover the roasting tray.

Place the roasting tray on the stove top over a high heat. Leave it on the stove top until the wood chips begin to burn (gently move the wood chips around to create even burning).

When a lot of smoke begins to rise to the top, quickly place the baking rack with the duck breasts on top of the roasting tray. Immediately cover with the foil trying not to allow any of the smoke to escape.

Place into the pre-heated oven and roast for 8 minutes.

Remove from the oven and allow to rest, covered, for approximately 20 minutes until the breasts have cooled down.

Open the foil and brush the duck with some of the roasting juices from the stone fruit. Slice the duck breasts thinly lengthwise and set aside for assembling.


Place the stone fruit, thinly sliced duck breast and crisp salad leaves into a large mixing bowl.

Lightly dress with the stone fruit juices and gently toss together.

Divide amongst six salad bowls and serve with the remaining stone fruit juices.