Saffron Risotto With Duck Breast

Saffron Risotto With Duck Breast

Duck is one of my favorite proteins and risotto is one of my favorite overall dishes, so I figure why not make a dish that uses both. I decided to kick it up a notch and use a good amount of saffron to really make this an impressive dish. Making risotto isn’t difficult at all, and my collection of delicious risotto recipes show you just how much variation there can be. This saffron risotto with duck breast looks impressive, but is seriously easy.

The main things you will need for this recipe is arborio rice (or any specific strain of risotto rice you prefer), a duck breast, and saffron. The other ingredients can be substituted or left out if you prefer. However using my tips and tricks that I apply to all my risotto recipes is sure to impress all your guests.

How To Make The Duck Breast For The Saffron Risotto

making risotto and cooking duck breast

This recipe, like many of my duck breast recipes, has a little bit of technique, but overall it’s quite simple. Preheat your oven to 180 Celsius. Start with a cold pan and place the breasts (salted on both sides) skin side down. Turn the heat on the lowest setting and slowly raise it while letting the fat render out. The fat will run clear, and when you see a decent amount check the skin to see how it is browning. If it is golden brown, flip the duck and cook for another 30 seconds. Place the duck back skin side down and pop in the oven for 6 minutes. I usually start the duck breast about 5 minutes after I start the risotto so they finish close together.

perfectly cooked french style duck breast

Remove the pan from the oven and place the duck breast on a cutting board to rest. Cover with a sheet of foil if you finish the breast while the saffron risotto is still being cooked. When the rice is done you will thinly slice the breast skin side down and lay atop the dish. Using this method you can make duck for a variety of recipes, like my duck breast with plum sauce or my duck with Vietnamese style noodles.

How To Make Saffron Risotto

making saffron risotto

In a large flat bottomed pan add a bit of olive oil and on medium high heat add the rice. Get the rice nice and toasty and then pour in half a cup of dry vermouth or other fortified wine. As soon as you add the alcohol, add in one finely diced shallot. Stir the pan until the liquid is almost completely gone. Then start adding duck stock (or chicken stock if you can’t get duck) a quarter cup at a time to the pan stirring the entire time. After your second quarter cup sprinkle in a pinch of saffron and stir it around. Remember, saffron is expensive but a little goes a long way.

Making saffron risotto with duck stock

Slowly keep adding the duck stock as it reduces while stirring the whole time. A figure eight movement with the wooden spoon is perfect for making risotto. If you notice the pan getting too hot then add more liquid at one time instead of a quarter cup. A quick note, if your duck stock is unsalted you may want to thrown in a pinch as the risotto cooks. However you should also know that the cheese added is salty so don’t add too much.

adding butter and cheese to the risotto

When you are on your last quarter cup of duck stock turn off the heat. Add two tablespoons of butter (or 1 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp of the rendered duck fat from the pan) along with a quarter cup of grated Pecorino Romano.

Perfectly rich and creamy saffron risotto

The final saffron risotto should be rich and creamy with a gorgeous yellow color. Because the heat is off the rice will not dry out at the end, which a lot of people seem to have trouble with. Just plate in a shallow bowl and lay the thinly sliced duck breast on top.

Saffron Risotto With Duck Breast

Saffron Risotto With Duck Breast

Best Risotto Recipes

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