Broiled Duck Breast

Ingredients

    For sauce

  • 2 1/2 cups fresh orange juice
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped canned chipotle chiles in adobo
  • 1 (3- to 4-inch) cinnamon stick
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • For duck

  • 3 (1-lb) boneless Muscovy duck breasts with skin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • Special equipment: an instant-read thermometer

Preparation

    Sauce:

  • Boil all sauce ingredients in a heavy saucepan over moderate heat, skimming foam occasionally, until syrupy and reduced to about 1 cup, 30 to 40 minutes. Let stand while duck broils. Can be made 2 days ahead and chilled, covered. Reheat before adding juices from duck.

  • Duck:

  • Add 1 cup water to broiler pan and replace rack. Preheat broiler with pan 5 to 6 inches from heat.
  • Pat duck breasts dry and score skin at 1-inch intervals (do not cut into meat), then sprinkle all over with salt and pepper. Broil duck breasts, skin sides down for 8 minutes, then turn over and broil until thermometer inserted horizontally into center of a breast registers 130°F (see cooks' note, below), 8 to 10 minutes more for medium-rare. Transfer to a cutting board and let stand 5 minutes.
  • Holding a sharp knife at a 45-degree angle, cut each duck breast into thin slices and serve with sauce.
  • Cooks' notes: The USDA recommends cooking duck breasts to an internal temperature of 170°F to ensure that any harmful bacteria are killed, but since we prefer the meat medium-rare, we cook it to only 130°F. Otherwise, the duck gets tough.

  • Serves 6.