This is the more substantial version of the Roasted Fennel, Orange & Grape Salad. It has all the summery light goodness plus some spiced pink duck on top. A winner every time in my book...
2 Fennel Bulbs
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
a couple of handfuls of mixed salad leaves, such as Watercress, Rocket & Spinach
a large handful of Grapes, halved … I used Sable Grapes
Freshly Snipped Wild Fennel or Dill Fronds
2 large Oranges
2 tablespoons of Olive Oil
Maldon Sea Salt & Freshly Ground Pepper
2 Duck Breasts, skin scored
1 teaspoon Fennel Seeds
1 teaspoon Cumin Seeds
1 teaspoon Black Peppercorns
1 Star Anise
1 teaspoon Maldon Sea Salt
Preheat the oven to 180°C/355°F.
Prep the Duck Breasts:
Put the fennel seeds, cumin seeds, peppercorns and star anise into a dry frying pan and fry for a couple of minutes to bring out the flavours of the spices. Put the roasted spices into a small spice grinder along with the salt and blitz into a powder. (If you don’t have a spice grinder then just use pre-powdered versions of the spices)
Rub the spice mixture over the duck breast skins making sure you get into the scored lines. Leave to absorb the roasted spices for as long as possible.
Make the Roasted Fennel:
Cut the fennel into chunky slices, keeping the stems intact, and drop into boiling water for 10 minutes.
When the fennel is tender place the slices onto a baking tray and roast for approximately 20 minutes or until they have charred slightly and taken on a roasted colour. Remove from the oven and put to one side. Whilst the fennel is roasting make the orange dressing.
Cook the duck breasts:
Heat a dry non-stick frying pan until very hot. Put the duck breasts skin side down into the pan and fry for approximately 5-7 minutes until the skin is crispy and the fat rendered. Turn over and cook for another 2 minutes. Take the breasts out of the pan and leave to rest for at least 10 minutes. When ready to serve, slice each breast slightly diagonally.
Make the dressing:
Zest the oranges, then squeeze both of them. Put the zest and juice into a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Turn the heat down and reduce to half its volume then put it to the side to cool.
When cool whisk in the olive oil and add seasoning to taste.
Arrange the salad leaves across a large serving platter or individual plates.
Carefully add the cooled roasted fennel slices, and sprinkle grapes over the platter.
Add the sliced duck breast.
Finally dribble over the orange dressing and top with the Wild Fennel or Dill fronds.