Long Island Duck Breasts a l’Aquitaine


Bitterly, I recall the many times I blithely suggested that the poor, disadvantaged food bloggers, with no access to lardon, use bacon.


What a supercilious jerk I was!  Penitent in Pennsylvania, I hopelessly trawled the meat bins at Wegmans.  I unenthusiastically  considered the unsliced bacon slabs.  Way too fatty.  Finally I settled on a double package of thick sliced bacon; one to freeze and one to use as an everyday cooking lardon substitute.


The bacon fried up nicely.  That’s because I am blessed and non-anemic after the fantastic spinach, bacon, onion, red bell pepper and garlic stir fry I made.


Bacon doesn’t really count as a meat.  It’s a perfect condiment for vegetables.  Really. Although the spinach stir fry would have been fine without the bacon, it would have been different.  Lunch 🙂


Long Island duck breasts are smaller than the duck breasts in France and Germany AND more expensive.  They cannot be called “magret” because they are neither from a Barbary duck nor have the ducks been submitted to “gavage” or force feeding.  The breast is definitely leaner with less fat and the meat seems to have a softer texture.


Because there is less fat, when scoring the breasts, one should be careful about making the cuts too deep; I wasn’t and did cut into the meat portion several times.   I did worry a bit because I realized that I would need to adjust the cooking time for smaller breasts.  Still, they turned out okay.


Sage butter linguine.


Long Island Duck Breasts a l’Aquitaine

4 Long Island duck breasts, fat side scored

Salt and pepper

2 pkgs vanilla sugar

1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1/2 tsp black pepper

Sprinkle the duck breasts on both sides with salt, pepper, package of the vanilla sugar and 2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar.  Refrigerate for 2 hours.

Boil the 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar with the remaining package of vanilla sugar and black pepper until reduced by half.  Set aside and keep warm.

Sear the duck breasts in a hot skillet, fat side down, for 3-4 minutes.  Turn and continue to cook for 3-4 minutes.  Remove from the skillet and let rest for 5 minutes before slicing.

Slice and serve with the balsamic reduction.

Sage Butter Linguine

4 tbsp butter

8-10 sage leaves

2 tbsp lemon juice

1 lb cooked linguine

Grated Parmesan

Melt and cook the butter in a sauce pan until browned.  Add the sage leaves and remove from flame.  Stir in the lemon juice.  Toss the sauce with the cooked linguine and cheese.



About cookinginsens

An American living in Burgundy, France
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32 Responses to Long Island Duck Breasts a l’Aquitaine

  1. Cynthia says:

    Beautiful dishes. I want to try all of the recipes but especially the stir fry.

  2. dimshum says:

    I’ve never seen duck breasts sliced that way before; it looks really artistic (and delicious) 🙂

  3. Mad Dog says:

    That looks like good duck. I’m hoping to see some nice big wild ones at the farmers’ market soon… In Spain all types of pork count as vegetarian, especial if the pig has been fed acorns and the fat turns to oleic acid, the main constituent of olive oil 😉

  4. Karista says:

    Rosemary these are gorgeous! I feel like I could actually taste them just by looking at the photo. I think I was drooling. 🙂

  5. reggiorif says:

    Those duck breasts have a wonderful colour… the skin looks so nice and crispy!

  6. Love the sage butter linguine….always wondering what to do with glut of sage leaves

  7. YUMMY!!!

  8. What a gorgeous dish, Rosemary. I’ve become a bit of a sucker for duck!

  9. Ah you can’t be too hard on yourself with the lardon/bacon bit. With international blogging substitition is almost a must! I wish it wasn’t.

  10. sarahgiebens says:


  11. Yum yum! 🙂

  12. Dineo says:

    I need to try these dishes soon. Looks really yummy!

  13. Cannot remember the last time that I cooked duck! Thanks for reminding me how delicious it is.. you definitely have inspired me to go out and buy some to cook soon!

  14. Looks perfect, all of it. The spinach salad, the duck and really love your sage butter linguine.

  15. Michelle says:

    The tiny duck breast are difficult, aren’t they? I’m always terrified of overcooking them. But clearly you did well!

  16. Conor Bofin says:

    Great lardon rant. Lovely cooking, as always.

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