Tamarind and sesame duck salad

Tamarind and sesame duck salad

Leiths How to Cook
Peter Cassidy


Quantity Ingredient
4 duck breasts
2 tablespoons tamarind paste
1 teaspoon clear honey
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
4 cm piece fresh root ginger
1 garlic clove
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
1 teaspoon nam pla
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
1 teaspoon soft light brown sugar
1 lime
1 red chilli
1/2 cucumber
1 mango
6 spring onions
1/2 bunch coriander
1/2 bunch mint
150g mixed salad, including pea shoots if available


  1. Remove the skin from the duck breasts. Mix 1 tablespoon of the tamarind paste with the honey and dark soy sauce. Peel and grate the ginger, peel and crush the garlic and add both to the soy mixture. Spread this over the duck breasts and set aside for at least 20 minutes, ideally overnight in the fridge, to absorb the flavours.
  2. Lightly toast the sesame seeds in a hot frying pan, then tip onto a plate to cool.
  3. For the salad dressing, whisk together the sesame oil, 1 tablespoon of the sunflower oil, the nam pla, light soy sauce, sugar and the remaining tamarind paste. Finely grate the zest and juice the lime. Add the lime zest to the dressing with juice to taste. Halve, deseed and finely slice the chilli, then add it to the dressing.
  4. Heat a large frying pan with the remaining sunflower oil. Remove the duck breasts from the marinade and fry them over a medium heat until the first side caramelises, then turn over and repeat on the other side. Turn down the heat and cook the breasts for a further 2 minutes on each side (it should still be pink inside), then remove them to a board to rest for 5 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, to make the salad, cut the cucumber into fine dice. Peel the mango and cut the flesh from the stone, then dice it. Finely slice the spring onions and roughly chop or tear the coriander and mint leaves. Put everything into a bowl with the sesame seeds, salad leaves and enough of the dressing to coat the leaves, being careful not to crush the mango as you toss the salad.
  6. Slice the duck breasts and put on serving plates with a pile of salad and any juices or extra dressing drizzled around.


  • For a more substantial salad, cook 200 g soba noodles and toss with the salad.
Leiths School of food and wine
cookery course
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