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Duck, Duck… RAGÙ!


Duck, Duck… RAGÙ!

Cristina Soriano

Before we go any further, I’d like to state that I by no means am a proponent for hunting wild animals. In fact, I’m not very comfortable around guns, bows and camo-gear. But, I DO very much delight in eating meat, and by that very nature, animals must be sacrificed. 

This past weekend, Ascanio and Sebastian delighted in one of his biggest passions: hunting. After waking up at 5:30 am to perch himself amidst the reeds on the bank of the pond at Flanagan Hill Farm, he woke me up with a cosmic grin and a prize of a paddling ducks. 

So, what did I do? Spent an afternoon in the kitchen making duck ragù! I don’t like eating very ‘gamey’ meat, so I thought that a ragù would be ideal in cooking the duck – a long, slow cook would meld the flavors of the red wine, tomatoes and onion and would reduce the wild flavor. 


3 duck breasts

1 medium onion, chopped

2 cloves of garlic

½ cup red wine

2 cups chicken stock

2 teaspoons of rosemary

Can of whole tomatoes, chopped, but keep the juice

1 tablespoon of butter

1 tablespoon of olive oil

Salt and pepper

 Heat the butter and olive oil in a heavy skillet. A Le Creuset works best! 

 Pat the duck breasts dry and season with a sprinkling of salt and pepper. 

Sear the duck breasts in the butter and oil until the golden brown, about 7 minutes. Turn the breasts over and cook another 2 minutes. Remove from the skillet. 

Add onion, garlic and rosemary to the fat. Stir occasionally until the onions have browned. 

Add wine and let boil for a few minutes.  Then add the tomatoes, chicken stock and the duck breasts.

Bring to a boil, then simmer for an hour. 

Remove the duck onto a chopping board and blend the reduced sauce in a blender.

Combine all ingredients and reduce even further on high heat. If the sauce is still slightly watery, add some breadcrumbs to thicken.

Cook pasta of choice and mix with ragù!

Buon appetito!! 

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