Seafood- Lesson 3: Mussel & Prawn Chowder

This post is quite late late as my husband and I had an extra, extra long weekend across the other side of Australia, in Perth, where I cooked, for his mothers 70th birthday party for group of 30 friends and family. So…I am only now getting to share with you what we did in the last week of my ‘official’ last lesson of 2018. I say ‘official’ because I need to do a make-up class of Seafood Lesson One given I missed it whilst in hospital. I can’t believe my first year at culinary school is almost at a close, it only seems like yesterday that I first put on my chefs whites (which I still get a buzz when I put on!). The year finishes with three review assessments, also known as Holistic Menus, in which I need to cook a menu of 3- 4 dishes demonstrating my competence in the techniques learned in second semester. I am actually writing this post after completing the first assessment, in which I am pleased to say I was found competent. Lesson Three was a Trio of Salmon, Fish and Fennel Pie, Prawn Cutlets with Tartare Sauce & Mussel & Prawn Chowder (recipe below).


The first task was to prepare the Trio of Salmon, which were Sous Vide, Gravlax and Smoked. For the Sous Vide, the pre-prepared salmon fillet, herbs and butter were placed in a bag which was vacuum sealed and placed in a water bath at 45 degree celsius for 30 minutes. For the Gravlax, the flesh of the salmon was covered with 150g rock salt, 150g sugar and some dill. It was wrapped tightly in plastic wrap, weighted down and left to cure for 4 hours. The dry smoked salmon was prepared by curing it in a 50/50 mix of rock salt and sugar for an hour before smoking over wood chips. It is interesting to see the change in texture in the fish from the different applications. For me, sous vide is the winner, the flesh is moist and tender and there is an integrity to the flavour. It is such a versatile cooking method and has become one of my favourite ways to prepare proteins at home. The Trio of Salmon was served with a simple crunchy salad of red onion, apple, reddish, parsley and horseradish with a dressing of honey, mustard & white wine vinegar.


Salmon vacuum sealed and ready for sous vide



Salmon three ways with crunchy salad

This class required a lot of preparation and chopping but it was so much fun. Next up was getting the base sauce for the Fish and Fennel pies done. The base comprised of a white roux to which sweated large dice of leek & fennel was added. The sour cream, mustard, chopped dill and lemon zest was then added, followed by the fish. The fish needs to be a firm one & the sauce needs to be quite thick. As the fish cooked in the sauce the pastry lids were prepared, complete with fish motif 🐠. In class the fish pies were made in foil tart tins but at home they could be made in ramekins, which would look very nice, especially with such pretty fishy lids!


Preparation done and ready to start cooking


Baked Fish pies

Whilst the chowder cooked, we prepped and cooked the prawn cutlets…this is very straight forward and needs no explanation except to say, always, always, always de-vein the prawns. As we butterflied ours, removing the vein was easy but chef also showed us a good ‘chefs hack’ on using a bamboo skewer (or tooth pick) to remove the vein which keeps the whole prawn in tact…( I love tricks).


Prawn cutlets with Tartare Sauce

A chowder always has a base of leek and potato, and this one was particularly tasty. Interestingly, Chef substituted a light chicken stock for the fish stock listed in the recipe, this made it less ‘fishy’ and more subtle in flavour (love Chef Michael – he knows his stuff!). Under his guidance we left the prawns whole….as… who doesn’t like to get a whole prawn in a soup? Chef also changed the recipe in other ways, omitting the garlic and basil, & the end product was not only very attractive, it was also delicious and will be on high rotation in my kitchen.



Mussel and Prawn Chowder

This post might be my last for 2018 from a ‘cooking school’ adventure perspective….I’ll see how the make-up class goes. As far as documenting the assessments, I doubt that I want to divert my attention from the task/s at hand so as to snap photos as I go. At the beginning of the assessment, Chef tells us when each dish needs to be presented. But (oops shouldn’t start a sentence with ‘but’), as the first assessment is behind me, I can tell you that at 10.30 am I served Eggs Benedict (the hollandaise was the best I have ever made ☺️), at 11.30 am served crispy pan fried Chicken Supreme with pan roasted potatoes and a salad (a chicken was broken down for the Chicken Supreme and a stock was made from the wings, legs and carcass – to be used in the next assessment). Finally at 12 noon I served a wedge of Polenta Cake with Lemon Syrup garnished with julienned lemon zest.

At the beginning of the year I was Kathryn to the chef’s under which I was learning, at the end of the year I am now called ‘chef’ by the other chef’s. I am not fooling myself, there is still such a long way to go but I can honestly say that next to motherhood, this is the most satisfying journey I have consciously embarked on….. it’s never too late to start.

Bon Appetit

Kathryn 💙👩‍🍳

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Seafood – Lesson Two: Calamari & Stir-fried Vegetables with Chilli and Lime Dressing

Finally I have returned to college after an unexpected break. I missed the first lesson of Seafood as I was in hospital, but luckily I am able to do a make up class in a few weeks, which is a relief as the first class of Seafood is a foundation lesson to the block. The second lesson had such recipes as, Trio of Salmon, Fish and Fennel Pie, Prawn cutlets (yum) and Mussel and Prawn Chowder (double yum), but none of that arrived in the kitchen on the day….instead the ingredients for lesson three was delivered….so change of plan (which chef said is an everyday event in a restaurant kitchen). Lesson three was, Octopus in Red Wine, Calamari and Stir-fried Vegetables, Ceviche of Snapper and Oysters – Natural & Kilpatrick.


As always I was impressed with the quality and freshness of the ingredients we were provided to work with and with the generosity of spirit (and at times patience) of our teaching Chef. As we are required to know how to handle and prepare Seafood, we need to learn how to take the whole animal and break it down for the dish we are making. We started with the slow braised Octopus in Red Wine and today we used baby, uncleaned, octopus, which are very easy to prepare. Cut the head off under the eye line, poke the beak through and remove and cut the body in half. If you want to use the head, which you can, (and we did), it’s a messy but easy job (I suggest food handling  gloves). Hook out the contents of the head, which includes the ink sac (hence the gloves). Wash and cut to open flat.

With the ingredients for the braise and a cartouche made, the octopus was left to gently simmer on the stove top under the cartouche over a low heat for just over an hour. The cartouche ensures the liquid doesn’t evaporate too quickly, important as not only is the liquid needed to cook the octopus but also forms the dressing for the finished dish. The octopus was served with a salad of mesclun leaves, green beans, tomatoes, yellow capsicum and parsley. The garnish was finely finely julienned yellow capsicum and a cheek of lemon.


Next we turned our hand to the Calamari….where as in the recipe I provided below asks for cleaned whole calamari, we had to clean ours! This entailed cutting off the tentacles, which were retained for the dish, pulling the head out (hopefully with ink sac attached), removing the wings and skin, removing the cartilage and any remaining intestinal matter. Once was calamari was cleaned and opened (sliced on the side which has the fold) it was very gently scored. The calamari was cut in random diamond shapes and cooked as per the recipe provided.


The last two dishes were more about the technique of handling the seafood than the cooking, which was minimal. First we needed to fillet the snapper for the ceviche. A couple of tricks here are; once you remove the fillet on the first side and turn the fish over to remove the second fillet, allow the head of the fish to hang off the board, this will allow easier access to remove the second fillet. Also, remove the skin before you start to pin bone – the bones stick to the skin (who knew?)!  It was then a simple task of curing the diced fillet and adding it to the brunoise onion, chilli & corriander.

Chef decided to throw back to the 80’s and serve the ceviche in an avocado ‘rose’. Please see below Chef’s finished dish (beautiful) and my poor attempt…not so much a rose as…I don’t know what I would call it!. To be fair, Chef said he has made 100s of these and I was pressed for time, so the required finesse is clearly lacking. Regardless of how mine turned out, I have tried to show you the idea….you need to slice the avocado thinly (but not overly) and then make a long open tail of the slices (mine was not open enough) then roll it in on itself. Move it to the plate with a fish slice before filling with the ceviche.

Last were the oysters. I love them as they are…I don’t require any adornment apart from seasoning and a squeeze of lemon. The real lesson here was how to shuck an oyster. We had two different types, Sydney Rock (my oyster of choice) and Pacific. Chef showed us how to ‘attempt’ shucking without stabbing ourselves….these little devils are hard to open! First wash your oysters to remove any grit, then fold a tea-towel across your bench as this forms a ledge on which to rest the oyster and provides a protective cover for your other hand which holds the oyster in place. Starting at the base, insert the oyster knife and push in using all your weight, when you feel the knife has broken through start to wiggle the knife to release the foot. Your reward for this hard work hopefully is a beautiful oyster, which you need to bathe in salted water using a pastry brush to remove any grit, loosen with the flat edge of a bread and butter knife and flip over to serve ( for appearances sake).

I am so glad I am back and can’t believe I only have one more class for the year, followed by three weeks of assessments. I still haven’t secured a placement, but now I am returned to health I can start working on that again. Hope to see you next week!

Bon Appetit

Kathryn 👩‍🍳💙

Calamari & stir fried Vegetables with Chilli and Lime dressing
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
Total Time
35 mins

A beautifully colourful, tasty and quick dish...nice for a light summer lunch with a crisp white wine.

Course: Main Course
Servings: 2 people
  • .5 Cleaned whole Calamari
  • 3 Limes (fresh)
  • .25 bunch Corriander (Cilantro)
  • 1 Small red chilli
  • 30 mls Fish Sauce
  • 30 gms Palm Sugar (can substitute white sugar)
  • 100 gms Snow peas
  • 100 gms Bean Sprouts
  • 100 gms Zucchini (Courgette)
  • .5 Red Capsicum (Bell Pepper)
  • .5 Yellow Capscium
  • .25 tsp Chinese Five Spice
  • 1 tsp Light Soy sauce
  • 1 tblsp Sesame oil
  • 50 mls Peanut oil
  1. Cut the vegetables (snow peas, capsicums and zucchini) into medium sized uniform shapes and deseed and finely chop the chilli.

  2. Make dressing by grating the palm sugar and mixing with approximately 30 mls of lime juice and the fish sauce.

  3. Cut two lime cheeks for garnish and takes corriander leaves from the stem.

  4. Heat wok with half the peanut and sesame oil until smoking, add the vegetables , soy sauce and five spice. Sauté until cooked but still crunchy Remove from heat & place in a bowl.

  5. Dry the calamari and cut down crease side to open up. Gently score the inside flesh being careful not to cut through, lightly season. 

  6. Add remaining oil to the wok and bring it back to high heat. Add calamari and  chilli keep moving so as it cooks/browns but doesn't stew. 

  7. Add the dressing, taste for seasoning and adjust as required. Return the vegetables to the wok and toss quickly.

  8. Serve on a large platter and garnish with corriander leaves and a lime cheeks.

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Catch-up Spatchcock & Corn and Coriander Puree

As per my last post, I missed the last week of Cooking School due to an unexpected stay in hospital. The only way to gain credit, and pass the Poultry Dishes component, is to demonstrate that I have cooked the recipes. So once back from our week away in Perth, I turned my hand to the two recipes of Week 3; Grilled Spatchcock with Corn & Coriander Puree & Balsamic Glaze and Pot Roasted Poussin with Sage & Walnut stuffing.

Spatchcock is both the name given to a young chicken of around three weeks of age, and a cooking preparation technique involving cutting the bird almost in half but leaving the two parts connected. It is as easy as taking kitchen shears and cutting the back bone out of the poultry to be cooked. The removed piece can be used in stock – simply freeze for later use if you don’t have enough ‘trimmings’.

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Where as I needed to make all the components of the recipe to demonstrate I had made what would have been normally done in class, I changed the recipe, as I usually do. My husband has always called this the “Kathryn in the Kitchen” treatment and it’s how my moniker came about! I made the balsamic glaze but choose not to use it as I preferred to coat the spatchcock in a small amount of truffle oil, truffle mustard (purchased on our trip to Perth) and crushed garlic. Once coated and rested for 30 minutes, the spatchcock was grilled on the BBQ. I served it with steamed vegetables and the Corn and Coriander Puree (recipe below).

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Poussin is a term used by butchers to describe a young chicken which is around 4 weeks at time of slaughter & weighs around 450 grams, i.e. fairly interchangeable with the term spatchcock. For the Pot Roasted Poussin the bird was kept whole, stuffed, placed on a bed of mirepoix (carrot, celery and onion), smothered in butter and cooked with the lid one for around 40 mins before removing the lid to allow the bird to brown. The stuffing was delicious….onion, garlic, chicken livers, panko bread crumbs, fresh sage and thyme, roasted walnuts and some bacon. I overstuffed my bird which led to the skin splitting, next time I will use less in the cavity but will make some balls with what is left and cook along side the bird – it is too good to waste!  I served my Poussin with cauliflower puree and roasted vegetables.


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So recipes made and photos taken, I trust Chef will mark me as competent in Poultry. There is a mid semester break now, the first week was spent with my husbands family in beautiful Perth and the following photos are just a few of the meals and outings we enjoyed whilst there. It’s been a crazy few weeks and I look forward to getting back to School to start the final component of Year 1….Seafood.



Bon Appetit

Kathryn 💙👩‍🍳

Corn & Coriander Puree
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
35 mins

An alternative to straight corn on the cob & a delicious accompaniment to grilled, barbecued or baked meat or fish. 

Course: Side Dish
Keyword: Sweet corn,
Servings: 2 people
  • 2 cobs Corn
  • 1 Onion
  • .5 bunch Coriander (cilantro)
  • 50 grams Butter
  • 250 ml Chicken, vegetable or made from the corn cobs
  • Salt & Peper to taste
  1. Remove corn kernels from the cobs. The easiest way to do this is placing an inverted bowl within a lager bowl to catch the ricocheting kernels. 

  2. If using corn cobs for the stock add an hour to the preparation time. Simply place the denuded corn cobs in a pot of cold water and bring to the boil, then gently simmer for around an hour. 

  3. Sweat the chopped onions & cleaned & chopped corriander roots and a few of the stems the butter until soft.

  4. Add the corn kernels and stock to the onion and corriander mix and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until soft and most of the stock has evaporated

  5. When corn is cooked and stock has reduced, blend to make a puree. You may need to drain some of the stock. Once pureed, bring back to the boil, season to taste and finish with some chopped corriander leaves. 

  6. Serve warm as a side dish to meat or fish.



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Poultry Dishes – Lesson 2. Duck, Quail & Puy Lentils.

This post has photos of boned and jointed Poultry.

This is a much delayed post of last weeks lesson, even though I started it soon after finishing the class last Tuesday with the plan to complete it over the weekend. Sometimes life doesn’t go exactly to plan, and last Sunday I spent the day in Emergency and have since been in hospital being treated for an old injury which has unexpectedly flared up. So now, over a week after lesson two, I am in sitting on my hospital bed, a little bit worse for wear, wearing very attractive white compression stockings, finishing off the post. Hopefully I will be out of hospital in the next day or two and will be given the all clear to travel to attend our niece’s wedding (cross fingers)!


Pretending to be Marie Antoinette in my white stockings!

Lesson two was another technical class, this time breaking down a duck and a quail to use in three dishes, & using the techniques of curing, rendering, cooking confit & deep frying. Confit is a way to preserve and applies to anything which is cooked in it’s own rendered fat. Even though on some menu’s you may see a vegetable side dish referred to as ‘confit’, e.g., confit tomatoes or confit potatoes, it’s not an accurate use of the term.  Again, I was busy in class not only with the recipes, but also with penning as many of Chef’s tips and information as I could capture!

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The same method is applied when breaking down any poultry, and the same rules apply, follow the bone structure. Starting with a whole duck, first remove the neck. The neck skin can easily be used as a sausage casing, which we didn’t do in class but I’ve done at home (photo below) & it’s a great way cut down waste & use as much of the bird as possible. Next step is to remove the wish-bone, this makes breaking the bird down a lot easier & again leads to less waste as it’s easier to get the meat from the carcass. From there the wing-tips are removed and the Maryland cut from the carcass. Lastly the breasts, with wing bone attached, are removed and then the wing bone is removed and the breast trimmed. Viola, 2 breasts and 2 marylands. The carcass and wing tips can be roasted and used to make a a rich duck stock.

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Duck Maryland & Breast


Duck Neck Sausage

Next task was to break down the quail… as you can imagine it is a little fiddly. This time the breast and the Maryland were removed from the carcass by following the rib cage and easing the meat off the bone, so as the end product was breast and maryland attached.

The quail and the duck maryland were cured; the quail simply in sugar and rock salt for 30 minutes and the duck in salt and aromatics (fresh thyme, garlic and orange zest) for 1 hour.  Did you know that curing or brining meat makes it cook more evenly? The curing changes the texture of the meat, making it firmer as you can see in the photos. The meat was removed from the curing mix & was washed before we moved on to the cooking.

The cured & rinsed quail was coated in a very easy tempura batter which produces a very crispy end product, simply self raising flour and a little cold water. Crushed up Nori sheets (dried seaweed) were added to the batter in which the quail was coated before being deep-fried. Remember, when adding anything battered to the deep fryer, don’t just drop it in to the hot oil as it will stick to the basket, rather, wave it back and forth in the hot oil a few times before gently releasing. When seasoning fried products, season just before serving, salt pulls out moisture and reduces the crispiness if done ahead of time. These crispy little morsels were served on a bed of quartered  radish and a wasabi, soy sauce and sesame oil dressing. Lunch!

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Plated Tempura Quail

For the Duck Confit, the duck maryland was cooked in the renewed duck fat we made in lesson 1 of Poultry. Garlic, thyme, pepper corns and a bay leaf were added to the pot along with the duck, the pot was covered with a cartouche and placed into a low oven (@ 120C) and cooked for 2 hours (low and slow)! Once cooked, confit can be stored in the fridge in a covered container (pot or jar) in the fat in which it was cooked for several months. When ready to serve, remove the duck from the fat, wipe down and cook in the oven at a high tempreature to brown the skin; the meat should be easily removed from the bone with a spoon or fork. A traditional accompaniment to Duck Confit is lentils, and the best lentils are Puy. The recipe I include below is a favourite of mine, not the one we made in class which lacked celery, wine and parsley. A tip from chef re cooking lentils is not to salt them until after they are cooked, the salt will retard the cooking…who knew?

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Confit Duck with Puy Lentils

The last recipe was a simple Duck Breast Salad with Rocket and Crispy Potatoes. Cooking duck breast is easy, start in a cold heavy based pan over a low heat with the skin side down. Cook slowly for about 10 mins, removing the fat from the pan as it renders. Once the skin is brown and crispy, and the rendering of the fat has slowed, turn the duck over and cook for 5-6 mins over a medium heat. Remove from the pan and rest so as the juices settle into the meat. The salad was made of blanched potatoes which were roasted in duck fat until browned, thinly sliced red onion and rocket with a dressing of sugar, red wine, raspberry vinegar, olive oil & toasted sesame seeds. You could add other things to the salad such as capers, artichokes and/or lightly pickled vegetables…. lovely with a glass of Rosé on a warm afternoon.

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Duck Breast Salad with Salad and Roast Potatoes

I missed this weeks lesson as I was in hospital, and I ‘hope’ to be away with family next week, so there won’t be my usual post next week either. I will have to make up the class by preparing the recipes (grilled spatchcock & roasted poussin) at home and photographing them for Chef to assess my ability… so where as it may be late, there will eventually be a posting of lesson three of Poultry.

Bon Appetit


Kathryn 💙👩‍🍳

Puy Lentils
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
1 hr 50 mins
Total Time
2 hrs

A simple but tasty dish of the prized green lentils from Le Puy which is in the Auvergne region of France. These lovely little lentils have a very mild peppery last and hold their shape throughout the cooking process. A lovely accompaniment to many poultry dishes. 

Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: French
Keyword: Lentils du Puy,
Servings: 4 people
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 stick Celery - finely diced (brunoise)
  • 1 medium Carrot - finely diced (brunoise)
  • 1 large Onion - finely diced (brunoise)
  • 1 cloves Garlic - crushed
  • 1 tbsp Tomato paste
  • 250 grams Puy Lentils
  • 250 ml Red Wine (white wine can also be used)
  • 250 ml Beef Stock
  • 1 Bay Leaf (dried)
  • 5 sprigs Fresh Thyme
  • 3 tbsp Parsley - finely chopped
  1. In a heavy based saucepan, add oil over a medium heat. Add the diced vegetables and cook over a low heat until soft and translucent - about 10 minutes.

  2. Add the crushed garlic and cook for 2 minutes.

  3. Add the tomato paste and cook for 5 minutes.

  4. Stir in the lentils, bay leaf and thyme and add the wine. Cook over a medium heat until wine is slightly reduced. 

  5. Add the stock and equal quantity of water to ensure the lentils are covered. Bring to boil then reduce heat to low and cook lentils for 45 minutes - until liquid is absorbed and lentils are cooked.  

  6. Stir through chopped parsley and serve. 

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A week off – Duck with Honey Soy Sauce

For reasons unknown the timetable at college was changed and this week there was no class. I had a whole day to do what ever I wanted to do…unheard of! There were some tasks in the category of ‘another day’, like cleaning my cooper saucepans (way over due as the before and after photos show), some garden tidy up, now that Spring has sprung, but also some catch up on recipe reading (..truth be known I started with the recipe reading and a coffee).

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The copper took no time….a cup of vinegar and a tablespoon of table salt….all done!

Having no class details to share with you, and being in the middle of the poultry segment of the course, I thought I’d review some of the poultry dishes I’ve made this year (to date). In hindsight it appears that I am something of a poultry tragic as clearly this has been the preferred protein at my table this year!

January: My husband jokes that he is probably one of the only guys whose wife is delighted with receiving a saucepan for her birthday. My gift this year was a beautiful copper gratin pan, so two weeks into the new year I made Chicken Casserole. So many dishes in my kitchen are made from ingredients I know simply work together – this was one of those.

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Chicken Casserole in my new copper pan

February: Next came a family favourite, Duck Confit. Also, I started my course at Cooking School and began cooking some of the lessons at home. The Teriyaki Chicken has been cooked a few times, sometimes on skewers and sometimes just the marinated thigh. 


Duck Confit with Potato Rosti


Teriyaki Chicken Skewers with Crispy Chicken Skin

March: With the arrival of cooler weather, my thoughts turned to soup. I just love a hearty soup and here we have a thick and flavourful Chicken and Vegetable Soup. Autumn also saw the return of Roast Chicken for Sunday evenings, now, thanks to school, properly trussed. The first one was the one I did at college, the second was a free range (happy) chicken I did at home. 

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Chicken Vegetable Soup

April: Top of the hit parade in April were, Chicken with Mushroom in White Wine Cream Sauce, Chicken Casserole a’ la Kathryn (i.e., free form  – no recipe) and the first of many Tandoori Chicken dishes, a recipe from college which we enjoyed as it was Myrevisited a few times in April and May!

May: Something more technical, Duck Neck Sausage, in which the skin of the duck neck is used to encase a mixture of minced duck meat, onion, garlic, mushroom, herbs and spices. There were some Chicken Pot Pies and also the first ‘revisit’ to the recipe of the day, Duck Breast with Honey Soy Sauce. This dish is easy and so tasty and I cooked it again in August, recipe provided below.


Duck Neck Sausage

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Duck Breast with Honey Soy Sauce with Chick Pea Panisses

June: I love the sous vide method of cooking, and this month I made a Chicken Ballotine which was wrapped in prosciutto. After being cooked in the water bath it was flash browned in the frypan before serving. The Ginger Chicken was a nice mid early Winter warmer.


Ginger Chicken Curry

July: Mid Winter July saw such gems as Pesto Chicken with Mushrooms, Chicken Tagine with Green Olives (pretty close to my favourite chicken dish), “Kathryninthekitchen’ Saffron spiced Duck Maryland and Tuscan Chicken. My husband calls any dish I make without a recipe a “Kathryninthekitchen” dish….I am so lucky to have my family’s support (and patience).

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Tuscan Chicken

August: Again, the Duck Breast with Honey Soy Sauce, and a new recipe in my kitchen, Lollipop Chicken… a great way to use Chicken wings. Now that I am buying and jointing whole chickens, this is a recipe I will return to. They make good finger food at a party or even an entree and are very economical, two lollipops per wing. These were marinated in a spice mix, battered and deep fried…

September: Two new favourites are discovered via class, Red Chicken Curry and Chicken Breast wrapped in prosciutto and cooked on the bone (thanks Cooking School).

There are still three months of the year to go and I am sure poultry will continue to feature in my cooking given the versatility of the product & the amazing product available. One of my favourite local producers is Burrawong Gain, a family owned business producing premium pasture raised poultry, champions of humane and sustainable practices. I always look for organic & free range when I buy poultry (and meat) because as a consumer I feel a responsibility to ensure the best treatment of the animal and the land on which it is raised…plus it just tastes better.

I hope you tune in next week when class resumes and quail and duck feature. Bye for now!

Bon Appetit

Kathryn 💙👩‍🍳

Duck Breast with Honey Soy Sauce
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
13 mins
Resting Time
5 mins
Total Time
18 mins

An easy and delicious duck recipe I came across via a cooking school in Nice, Petits Farcis, run by Rosa Jackson. You might think that honey, soy and balsamic vinegar wouldn't work together, but they do, and the sauce is a nice foil for the rich duck. 

I haven't been able to find ground green anise in Australia but a fantastic substitute is the Gewurzhaus blend called Duck, Duck, Goose. This blend is made from ground fennel, cassia, orange peel, star anise, juniper berry, clove and Sichuan pepper and marries well with the honey and soy. 

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: French
Keyword: Duck,
Servings: 2 people
  • 2 Duck breasts
  • 2 tbsp Honey - you can use a flavoured honey such as truffle
  • 2 tsp Soy Sauce
  • 1 tsp *Ground Green Anise or Duck, Duck Goose Gewurzhaus Spices are available on line
  • 2 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 tsp Balsamic Vinegar (extra to above)
  • 1 pinch Sea salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  1. Turn the oven on to very low.

  2. Skin side down trim the excess fat & skin from the duck breasts, turn over and gently score the skin in criss/cross pattern being carful not to cut the meat. Season with salt and pepper.

  3. Mix the honey with 1 tsp of the balsamic vinegar, the soy sauce and the *green anise or the Duck, Duck, Goose blend.

  4. Put the duck breast into a cold non stick pan over a medium heat, skin side down. When the fat starts to render, turn the heat to medium low and continue to cook until the skin is well browned - all the while spooning off into a separate bowl the rendered fat.

  5. Turn the duck over and cook on the other side for approximately 5 mins. You want the duck meat to be pink inside. Set aside covered in foil in the warm oven.

  6. Wipe out the pan and over a medium heat and add the honey mixture. Return the duck to the pan and turn in the mixture to coat. Deglaze the pan with the remaining balsamic (2 tbsp).

  7. Serve the duck breast sliced or whole drizzled with the sauce


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