Roast duck with plums

Serves: 4
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes

ROAST-DUCKIngredients:

2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
1 tsp sea salt
8 juniper berries
Freshly ground black pepper
4 duck breasts (with skin)
1 tbsp olive oil
Balsamic vinegar, for drizzling
Thyme sprigs, to garnish 

Quinoa salad

250g (9oz) butternut squash, cut into 1cm dice
1 tbsp olive oil
6 plums, halved and stones removed
50g (2oz) chopped roast hazelnuts
250g (9oz) quinoa
Handful of basil leaves, coarsely torn
½ onion, thinly sliced
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/R6

2. Finely chop the thyme, salt, juniper berries and coarsely ground black pepper together, then rub over the duck breasts. Place them in a roasting tin and drizzle with the olive oil. Roast in the oven for 25 minutes, turning once.

3. At the same time, put the butternut squash and olive oil in a separate roasting tin. Season and roast for 20-25 minutes, until golden and tender, adding the plums after 10 minutes, and the hazelnuts for the final 3-4 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, cook the quinoa in boiling salted water for 15-20 minutes, until tender. Rinse with cold water to cool quickly and drain thoroughly. Add the hot butternut squash, hazelnuts, basil, onion, red wine vinegar and olive oil. Toss to combine and season to taste.

5. Serve the duck breasts with the roast plums and quinoa salad. Season to taste, drizzle a few drops of balsamic vinegar and serve, garnished with thyme sprigs.

Recipe and image courtesy of www.beautifulcountrybeautifulfruit.co.uk

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