Crispy duck breasts with orange and red wine sauce


Crispy duck breasts with orange and red wine sauce

Nothing screams winter more than a crispy duck and here it is paired with a simple orange and red wine sauce enhanced with smoked paprika, to bring out the rich, warm flavours of the duck and lentils. The smokey, sweet orange flavours also compliment the Matawhero Malbec Merlot, with tonnes of rich berries and slight dry tannins.

Course Main Course
Servings 4 people


  • 3-4 bay leaves
  • 1 cup green puy lentils
  • 200 g baby rainbow carrots
  • 8 brown flat mushrooms wiped clean
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 500 g duck breast or duck legs

Orange and red wine sauce

  • 3 oranges juice and zest
  • 1/2 cup Matawhero Malbec
  • 1 tsp smoked sweet paprika
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 cinnamon quills
  • To serve, fresh herbs like mint, dill, chervil or parsley


  1. Heat a saucepan with 4 cups water until boiling and drop the bay leaves in it. Add the lentils and turn the heat down to medium. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes. Drain, drizzle with a little olive oil and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Keep warm and set aside.

  2. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Wash, trim and spread the carrots over a baking dish with the mushrooms. Season liberally with salt and freshly ground black pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Roast vegetables in oven for 20 minutes.

  3. Meanwhile, trim the duck breast of any extra fat, score the top of the skin with a sharp knife. Season with salt and pepper. Place the duck breast in an ovenproof frying pan that is cold. No oil is needed. Put it in skin side down. Turn the pan onto a medium to high heat and cook duck breast for approximately 9-10 minutes allowing the fat to render.

  4. Flip breast and cook for a further 4 minutes. Once browned, place into the oven for 10 minutes. When cooked remove and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

  5. Tip out the fat from the frying pan used to cook the duck leaving 1-2 tablespoons of juices in the pan. Add the orange juice, red wine, smoked paprika, maple syrup and cinnamon quills. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer, and allow the sauce to reduce to half. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Remove the cinnamon quills before serving.

  6. Serve the duck breasts on top of the warm seasoned lentils, with the roasted carrots and mushrooms, and pour over plenty of the orange and red wine sauce. Garnish with fresh herbs.