Thursday, January 15, 2009

Thai duck and green bean curry

Thai duck curry
Duck has to be one of my favourite meats, it's rich, dark, moist and tasty. According to Saint McGee, this richness is down to the the duck's abundant "myoglobin-rich" muscle fibres, a necessity when you need to fly hundreds of miles on the trot. It certainly puts the lazy old chicken to shame.

When out on the town, I can be almost guaranteed to choose duck confit if available, and I really miss the mouth-wateringly crispy Peking Duck that I ate on a regular basis in Hong Kong. However, it's January, and that means not only joining the gym, but replacing crispy skin with veggies and hot, fragrant, metabolism-boosting spiciness.

I adapted this recipe from one I found on the Good Food website. It's one of those slow-cooking, go-and-watch-the-TV-whilst-it-cooks type recipes. It's a new staple of mine and regularly crops up as weekday comfort food.

Thai duck and green bean curry - serves 2


2 duck breasts, without skin
3 tbsp green Thai curry paste
1 tbsp palm sugar (or brown sugar, if you don't have it)
400ml can coconut milk
1 tbsp fish sauce
Juice of 1 lime
3 kaffir lime leaves, shredded
100g (1/2 bag) green beans, trimmed and chopped in half
350g bag of fresh bean sprouts
1 red chilli, chopped finely
A handful of chopped fresh coriander, to garnish

1. Fry the duck breasts until they are browned and most of the fat has rendered off. Make sure you use a saute pan or saucepan as it will need to be deep enough to take the liquid ingredients later. Remove to the chopping board and let cool slightly. I usually pour the rendered fat into a jar and save it for other cooking purposes. Like goose fat, it's great for roasties!

2. In the meantime, fry the curry paste and sugar for 1-2 mins in the same pan.

3. Add the coconut milk, fish sauce, lime juice and lime leaves. Bring to a simmer.

4. Slice the duck breasts into bite size pieces, then add to the simmering coconut milk mixture.

5. Cover the pan and simmer gently for 1 hour.

6. Add the green beans and cook for 10 more minutes. Season with fish sauce and/or palm sugar as necessary.

7. Stir through the bean sprouts and chilli. Cook for 2 more minutes, then serve with shredded coriander and a big heap of steaming jasmine rice.

And now I'm off to the gym to see if I can improve my abundance of myoglobin-rich red muscle fibres. I think I'm more of a chicken though!

The Princess


Gourmet Chick said...

Great recipe. I love duck as well but am always a bit intimidated to cook it myself. This looks fairly achievable though.