Duck Breasts with Butter Beans and Creamy Apple Slaw

This is two recipes in one. You can either make the duck breasts to serve alongside the slaw, or, see the tips to turn this into a puff pastry-topped pie.
Duck Breasts with Butter Beans and Creamy Apple Slaw


  • 4 x free-range duck breasts, skin scored
  • 300g banana shallots, sliced
  • 300g carrots, cut to 2cm chunks
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 small apples, quartered, cored and sliced into matchsticks
  • 150g half-fat crème fraîche
  • Juice 1 lemon
  • 600ml chicken or light beef stock
  • 2 x 400g cans butter beans, drained and rinsed
  • 100g watercress


  1. Heat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas 6. Put the duck breasts skin-side down in a wide, heavy-based ovenproof pan over a medium-high heat. Cook for about 8 minutes to brown the skin and render the fat. Turn the duck over, transfer to the oven and cook for 8-12 minutes, depending on whether you like it rare or medium. Transfer the duck breasts to a plate and set aside.
  2. Discard most of the duck fat from the pan, then put the pan back on the hob over a medium heat. Add the shallots and carrots, cook for 10 minutes until lightly golden and softened, then stir in the garlic for the final minute.
  3. Meanwhile, mix the apple with the crème fraîche and half the lemon juice, then season and set aside.
  4. Add the stock to the pan, bring to the boil, then add the butter beans and simmer until the liquid has reduced by a third – about 10 minutes. Season with salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste.
  5. Slice the rested duck, return to the pan, along with any resting juices, and serve with the apple slaw and watercress on the side.

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