Duck breast, beetroot and chickpea salad, scorched lemon vinaigrette

Karen Martini

This is a restaurant-style main course, but if you already have the scorched lemon syrup you can easily have this on the table in less than an hour.


1 cup chickpeas, soaked overnight

1 fresh bay leaf

8 eschalots, loose papery skin removed

80ml extra virgin olive oil, plus extra

2 beetroot, trimmed, washed and sliced in wedges (no need to peel)

Salt flakes

Freshly ground black pepper

4 large duck breasts, winglet attached, skin on and scored in a crisscross fashion

2½ tbsp scorched lemon syrup (recipe: here)

60ml sherry vinegar

1 small clove garlic, grated on a Microplane

8 sprigs of tarragon, picked

1 punnet red garnet cress, or use other cress


Cook the chickpeas until tender in plenty of boiling water with the bay leaf - this will take about 50 minutes, but depends on the age of the chickpeas. While they cook prepare the other components.

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees fan-forced or 190 degrees conventional.

Oil the eschalots and roast in a pan for 30 minutes until soft.

Toss the beetroot with a dash of oil, season and roast in a pan for 25 minutes, flipping occasionally to colour evenly. Once cooked, remove, set aside. Turn the oven up to 200 degrees fan-forced or 220 conventional.

Season the skin of the duck well with salt. With a little oil, brown the duck breasts in a large frying pan skin-side down for about 5 minutes over medium heat, then flip and quickly seal the flesh.

Roast the duck breasts in the oven, skin-side up, for six minutes then rest - you may need to adjust the cooking time depending on the size of the duck portions.

Make the dressing by mixing the scorched lemon sauce, sherry vinegar, the 80ml of oil, garlic and some salt and pepper until well combined.

Cut the eschalots in half, leave skin on.

Drain the well-cooked chickpeas and squash half of them roughly.

Mix the whole chickpeas through the mashed ones with half the dressing and season to taste.

Pile some chickpeas on each plate with the beetroot and eschalots alongside.

Slice the rested duck breasts in half and lay over the top. Scatter over some snipped cress and tarragon, spoon over some more dressing and serve.