Duck and spinach curry

Duck and spinach curry

Leiths How to Cook
Peter Cassidy


Quantity Ingredient
sunflower oil, for frying
4 boneless, skinless duck thighs
1 cinnamon stick
4 cardamom pods
2 bay leaves
2 onions
4 cm piece fresh root ginger
4 garlic cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon crushed dried chillies
2 teaspoons garam masala
400g tinned chopped tomatoes
500ml water
300g spinach
freshly ground black pepper


  1. Heat just enough oil to cover the bottom of a large, lidded frying pan. Add the duck thighs and fry on all sides until golden brown. Remove and set aside.
  2. Break the cinnamon stick in half and add to the pan with the cardamom pods and bay leaves. Leave over a very low heat while you prepare the onions.
  3. Halve, peel and finely slice the onions and add them to the pan. You may need to add another 1–2 tablespoons oil. Cook gently until very soft, then increase the heat slightly and allow them to brown. Meanwhile, peel and grate the ginger and peel and crush the garlic. Put all the dry spices into a small bowl.
  4. Once the onions are brown, discard the cardamom and cinnamon. Add the garlic and ginger, stir well for a minute, then add all the dry spices. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the tomatoes and water, bring to the boil and season with salt and plenty of pepper. Add the duck, then lower the heat, cover and simmer until tender, about 2 hours. If the sauce becomes very thick, add 4–5 tablespoons water.
  5. Wash the spinach well, put into a large saucepan with just the water clinging to the leaves, and cook for 2 minutes, or until just wilted. Drain and cool in a sieve under cold running water, then press out excess water. Roughly chop the spinach.
  6. Take out the duck and reduce the sauce if necessary, to get a rich flavour. Adjust the seasoning, then add the spinach and duck to heat through. Serve with rice.
Leiths School of food and wine
cookery course
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