Oven-Roasted Duck Breast with Caramelised Swede

Oven-Roasted Duck Breast with Caramelised Swede

This recipe is from Gordon Ramsay – Makes It Easy. From the “posh” section. I didn’t quite manage to nail the “posh” look…

oven-roasted duck with turnip cubes carmelised with honey and ginger
I forgot to slice it!!! It may not look very posh here but it tastes fantastic. And it’s so easy to make.

It’s been a while since I’ve posted a recipe. And since all the recipes this year are from all ready tried and tested sources I have no excuse. So last weekend, the August Bank Holiday weekend here in Ireland, I made all six recipes I had left to make and I’m going to post one every Friday for the next 6 weeks.

gordon ramsay cookery book
This recipe is from Gordon Ramsay – Makes It Easy. From the “posh” section.

I love duck. I know it’s quite fatty but when the skin is nicely crispy and it’s paired with something a little fruity and sweet it’s just gorgeous. I never cooked a duck dish before. Assumed it would be too difficult. This dish is gorgeous and it’s very simple.

Did I make it right first time? No, I made the mistake of using the same pan to sear the duck breast and roast them. You end up with way too much fat in the pan if you do this. You can salvage it by pouring off most of the fat, which I did do but I definitely would recommend using a different pan for the roasting. In fact even when you do this you might still want to pour off a little of fat after removing the breasts to rest.

The duck does turn out nice and crispy, and a fair bit of the fat is cooked off. The recipe does call for Gressingham duck breasts, um… I used the duck breasts you can find in Aldi (€5.99 per pair) and they tasted great.

The recipe also calls for a splash of red wine. I used red wine this time but I’ve a very sweet tooth so the second time I used a ruby port instead and to be honest I prefer the port in this.

The swede, or turnip (what I call it) or rutabaga, is so good in this. It’s so sweet and I love ginger. I’ve been trying to think of what else to pair it with. So far all I can think of is Teriyaki chicken or salmon – which I’ve never made. Would it be nice with some fish in a lemon-garlic-butter sauce? Might be. I’ll definitely have to try it with some other things. I’d love to find some vegetarian dish to pair it with. Some sort of a curry thing? – I don’t know… Anyway it’s great with the duck.

chicken stock
The first time I made this the stock was homemade but … well while homemade stock is very nutritious and very easy to make it takes so long and makes the kitchen so steamy… And the shop bought ones are quite good these days.

The recipe also calls for dark chicken stock. Dark chicken stock is made like ordinary chicken stock but you roast the chicken bones first before adding them and veg to the stockpot. As you can see from the ingredients below I used a store-bought stock. Homemade stocks are great and nutritious but this is a very quick recipe with the ready made stock.

6 175g duck breasts, turnips, chicken stock, butter, red wine, ginger, thyme, honey, salt and pepper

Oven-Roasted Duck Breast with Caramelised Swede

Serves 6

Oven-Roasted Duck Breast with Caramelised Swede


  • Oven-Roasted Duck
  • 6 Gressingham duck breasts, about 175g each
  • 1 or 2 knobs of butter
  • handful of thyme sprigs
  • good splash of red wine
  • 2 large ladlefuls brown chicken stock
  • sea salt and pepper
  • Caramelised Swede
  • 1 large or 2 small swede, peeled
  • 40g butter
  • 2cm knob of fresh root ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1 - 2 tsp thin honey


  1. Heat the oven to 200C/Gas 6. With a sharp knife, score the duck breast skin in a criss-cross pattern, taking care to avoid cutting through the meat.
  2. Cut the swede into cubes, roughly 2.5cm, and simmer in salted water to cover for 10 minutes or until barely tender, then drain thoroughly.
  3. Heat a heavy-based frying pan over a high heat. Add the duck breasts, skin-side down, and sear for a few minutes, pressing down on the flesh to ensure an even colour. Turn the duck breasts over, add a knob of butter with the thyme sprigs, and cook for 30 seconds only. Transfer to a roasting pan, adding the thyme too. You may need to do this in batches.
  4. Roast the duck in the oven for 8 - 10 minutes, then transfer to a warm plate and rest in a warm place for 10 minutes. Put the roasting pan over a medium heat and add the wine, stirring to deglaze. Pour in the stock, bring to the boil and skim. Let bubble until reduced by half. Check the seasoning.
  5. Caramelise the swede, meanwhile. Heat the butter in a pan, add the swede with the ginger and honey, and sauté for 3-4 minutes until lightly caramelised.
  6. Pile the swede into the centre of warm plates.Thickly slice the duck breasts and arrange on top of the swede. Spoon over the jus.