Roasted Duck Breast with Beetroot and Honeyed Carrots

Taking inspiration from one of Chris Thomson’s recipes ‘Cold smoked Wild Duck Breast with beetroot and carrot salad’. We have warmed the recipe up a little for Autumn and our new release Great Western Pinot Noir. Chris included this recipe in our Celebrating 150 years book (1866-2016) with a nod to the Best family, who would have enjoyed wild duck off their land.

If you happen to acquire a whole wild duck you can roast up the entire bird (and have roast duck in bread rolls for lunch tomorrow) or you can separate the duck breasts from the carcass and remove the skin from the breasts. (Remove the legs and freeze for another time) Use the rest of the duck carcass to make a stock of consomme, (roasting the carcass in the oven first)

You can however purchase duck that has already been prepared.

Roast Duck Breast with Beetroot and honeyed Carrots


Duck Breast with skin off or on (depending on your taste, the duck skin with its layer of fat will roast up quickly in the oven and add to the sheen to the duck meat, retaining moisture)
4- 5 whole beetroots depending on size
1 x red onion
a bunch of smallish carrots
handful of walnuts to add to roasting pan
spoonful of local honey
2 x Valencia oranges
Pinch of ground star anise
orange peel zest of the two oranges
Black pepper
pinch of salt


Prepare duck for roasting in a hot oven set at 180C. Duck breasts, light oil if skin is on, a grind of black pepper,  ground star anise and a pinch of salt. Cook for half an hour, you can check that the meat is cooked through by placing a small skewer in the thickest part of the meat.

Wash, trim top and bottom of the whole beetroots to then quarter or into eighths. Peel and trim then red onion to cut into eighths, add to roasting pan with a splash of oil, pinch of salt and a grind of black pepper. Roast in oven for 20 mins to half an hour, depending on your oven.

The density of beetroot is similar to potatoes, needs time in the oven to cook properly. Roasting the beetroot and red onion by themselves minimises the beetroots beautiful colour imparting to everything it touches. Add the walnuts to the roasting beetroot and onions  in the last 5-10 minutes in the oven so they toast but do not burn.

If you can get a bunch of carrots with their stems intact, you can roast them whole. You do not need to peel the carrots but wash and trim the stems back as they will shrivel in the oven. Add oil and a grind of pepper before they go in the oven, roast for about 20 mins to retain ‘crunch’. Reserve the honey and drizzle over the roasted carrots, the warmth of the vegetable just out of the oven will melt the honey enough to coat the carrots.

Pour yourself a glass or two of Great Western Pinot Noir, thinly slice your roast duck meat to serve. Dress with the zest of an orange and squeeze its juice over the beetroot, walnuts and carrots.



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