You can adapt this recipe for any gamebird, though we were blown away by the amazing flavour of the duck which in true cured fashion had super intensifed depth of flavour.
1. Allow the duck breasts to come up to room temperature. Score the skin.
2. Mix the cure ingredients, sprinkle a layer on the base of a ceramic dish and place the breasts flesh side down onto the cure layer. Add more cure to the skin and rub in gently. Leave to cure in the fridge at least overnight or for around 12 hours.
3. You’ll find the duck colour has darkened considerably and the texture less springy. Remove from the cure, allow to soak in water for about 5 minutes which will remove any residual salt, rinse well and dry.
4. Allow to sit uncovered on a drying rack for a further 12 hours on a lower shelf in your fridge.
5. Remove from the fridge and bring to room temperature. Set up your smoker. We recommend cherry dust to complement the duck flavour. Cold smoke for around 10 hours and then leave to settle for a further few hours.
6. At the end of the process, slice thinly and eat. If you prefer you can cook the sliced duck, just like bacon for a wonderful breakfast variation!
Cured Duck Breast in the cold smoker
- 4 duck breasts (approx 1kg in weight)
For the Cure
- 60g hibiscus salt (add hibiscus flowers which you can get from a good deli) to a ready-mix cure or plain salt. Mix well and allow to blend. The salt will take on a wonderful deep red/purple colour and a piquant flavour)
- 30g Szechuan pepper
- 10g crushed black peppercorn
Hot Smoked Wood
- Cherry dust