Duck Breast with Blackberry Jam

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Duck Breast with Blackberry Jam

…and toasted farro, escarole, and caramelized onions

Courtesy of Chef Josh Thomsen, Executive Chef Eau Palm Beach Resort and Spa
serves 4


  • 2 (8-ounce/ 230 g each) duck breasts
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 4 sprigs thyme, divided use
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon (30 ml) extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup (240 ml volume) julienne red onions
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) brown sugar
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 3 heads baby escarole, cut and washed
  • 1 cup (240 ml volume) cooked farro (recipe follows)
  • 1 teaspoon (5 g) shallots, minced
  • 1 tablespoon (2.5 g) chopped parsley
  • 1⁄2 tablespoon (1.25 g) fresh thyme leaves, picked
  • Blackberry jam for plating (recipe below)

For the blackberry jam

  • 1 1/4 pounds (570 g) fresh blackberries
  • 3/4 cup (145 g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 lemon or lime, for juice


  1. Prepare the blackberry jam, caramelize the onions, and cook the farro (recipe follows) in advance.
    1. For the jam
      1. Rinse the berries in cool water, put into a bowl, and toss in the sugar. Cover and macerate overnight in the refrigerator.
      2. Put the berries into a large saute pan and warm them over medium heat until softened.
      3. Press the berries through a fine mesh sieve or food mill to remove the seeds.
      4. Put the berry puree back into the saute pan and heat, over medium heat, until thickened. Hold warm for plating.
    2. For the onions
      1. Heat 1 tablespoon of high smoke point oil in a saute pan over medium high heat.
      2. Add the onions in an even layer and sprinkle on the brown sugar.
      3. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are brown and limp.  Set aside or refrigerate if not using right away.
  2. Fill and preheat the SousVide Supreme water oven 132F/ 55C.
  3. Season duck breasts lightly with freshly milled black pepper and put into a cooking pouch; top each breast with a sprig of thyme and vacuum seal.
  4. Submerge in the water oven to cook for at least 30 minutes (and up to 2 hours.)
  5. Meanwhile, prepare the Farro and Vegetables (recipe follows)
  6. When ready to serve, remove breasts from the pouch; save the pouch liquid.
  7. Pat the breasts dry with paper towel/kitchen paper and season with kosher salt.
  8. On the traditional stovetop, heat a sauté pan over medium heat and add olive oil, smashed garlic clove, and the remaining thyme sprigs. When the oil just starts to smoke, reduce heat to low.
  9. Add duck breasts, skin side down, to pan and cook slowly for about 7 minutes to render the fat (pour off excess fat from pan during cooking). Flip the breasts over and cook for 1 minute more.
  10. Remove breasts from the pan and allow to rest. Reserve warm, while you make the sauce. Slice for serving.
  11. Pour off any oil left in pan and put it back on medium high heat. When hot add in escarole to slightly wilt and caramelize. Add the reserved pouch liquid, caramelized onions, farro, garlic, and shallots and cook until warmed through.  Finish with parsley and thyme. Keep warm for plating.

To Serve


  1. Streak the blackberry sauce across the plate.
  2. Put a small pile of the escarole/farro mixture to the side of the puree (so you can show off the jam).
  3. Placed sliced duck over the vegetables.
  4. Sprinkle fresh thyme leaves over the duck.


3/4 cup (142 g) farro
1 tablespoon (15 ml) olive oil
1/2 stalk celery, trimmed and finely diced
1/2 carrot, peeled and finely diced
1/4 turnip, peeled and finely diced
2 cups (480 ml) duck or chicken stock (or water)
1 teaspoon (5 ml) salt

1. In a saute pan on the stove top over medium high heat, lightly toast the farro.
2. Add the oil and the celery, carrot, turnip and saute until slightly softened.
3. Add the water and salt and bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and let simmer for 30 minutes, until most of the liquid is absorbed.
4. Fluff with a fork.

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