This recipe is adapted from the Hacienda de los Morales, one of Mexico City’s oldest and most beloved restaurants. Use thawed frozen berries if fresh ones are unavailable.
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1/3 cup Cointreau (or, in Mexico, Controy)
- 1/3 cup fresh orange juice
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 1 ¼ cup blackberries
- 1 ½ cup chicken broth
- 4 duck breast halves, about 5-6 ounces each
- Salt and pepper to taste
To make the sauce: Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a heavy bottomed sauce pan. Add the sugar and stir until it becomes a caramel color. Very carefully add the Cointreau and vinegar, stirring to combine. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, to completely dissolve the caramel. Add the berries and broth, and reduce to 1 cup. Sauce may be made 1 day ahead, refrigerated, covered, and reheated.
For the duck: Preheat the oven to 450o F. Score the duck breasts through the skin, being careful not to pierce the meat. Season with salt and pepper. Heat a large, heavy, ovenproof skillet and cook the duck breast, skin side down, until browned, 3-4 minutes. Turn and cook an additional 3-4 minutes. Place the duck breasts in the oven and cook to desired doneness.
Heat the sauce and whisk in the remaining 1 tablespoon butter, until melted. Taste and add salt and pepper. Slice duck breast halves and fan out on 4 plates. Spoon sauce over duck slices or, for a more modern presentation, spoon sauce onto plates first, then place slices of duck on sauce. Makes 4 servings.
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