VERIFIED BY Taste of Home Test Kitchen
- 4 cups water
- 2 cups pearl onions
- 2 cups balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 cup dried cherries
- 6 duck breasts with skin (5 ounces each)
- 1 tablespoon thinly sliced fresh sage leaves
- 2-1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
- 1 teaspoon pepper, divided
- 4 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1/4 cup white wine or additional chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/3 cup chopped pecans, optional
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
- In a large saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add pearl onions; boil for 3 minutes. Drain and rinse in cold water; peel and set aside.
- In another large saucepan, bring the vinegar, syrup and brown sugar to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 15 minutes or until liquid is nearly reduced by half. Add cherries; simmer 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat; set aside.
- Preheat oven to 375°. Cut a pocket in each duck breast. Stuff with sage; sprinkle with 1-1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Place skin side down in a large skillet. Cook over medium-low heat 10-12 minutes or until most of the duck fat has melted. Turn; cook 2-3 minutes or until lightly browned. Reserve drippings.
- Transfer duck to a 15x10x1-in. baking pan. Bake, uncovered, 15-22 minutes or until meat reaches desired doneness (for medium, a thermometer should read 165°; well-done, 180°).
- In duck drippings, saute sweet potatoes and pearl onions 6-8 minutes or until lightly browned. Stir in broth, wine, cumin, and remaining salt and pepper. Cook 3-5 minute or until potatoes are tender. Stir in pecans if desired. Serve with duck and cherry sauce. Garnish with parsley. Yield: 6 servings.
Originally published as Duck with Harvest Medley in Taste of Home's Holiday & Celebrations Cookbook Annual 2008, p44