Pomegranate Molasses-Glazed Duck Breast, Shaved Fennel and Spicy Green Salad, Pomegranate Seeds, Olive Oil Cured Persimmons and Walnut Vinaigrette

by Nickel & Nickel Executive Chef Trevor Eliason

Ingredients (Serves 2)

Duck Breast

  • 2 duck breasts
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


  • 2 ripe persimmons
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 fennel bulb
  • 4 cups spicy spring mix salad (you may substitute withregular spring mix)
  • ½ cup pomegranate seeds

Walnut Vinaigrette

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • ½ teaspoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon walnut oil
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup toasted walnuts, chopped


  • 2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses, for garnish (available in grocery stores)


Pre-heat an oven to 325˚F and season the duck breasts with salt and pepper.

The key to cooking a good duck breast is medium heat, which allows the skin to be crispy and the meat to stay a nice pink. I like to start with an oven safe sauté pan on medium heat. Add the olive oil, place the seasoned duck breast skin side down in the pan and move it around slightly for 5 seconds to keep the skin from sticking. Turn the heat downto medium-low and allow the fat to render. When the skin becomesa deep caramel color, flip the breast over and place in a 325˚F oven for 8 minutes. Remove and allow the duck to rest for three minutes before slicing.

Prepare ahead: Peel the persimmons and cut into 8 wedges. Place into a dish, season with salt and pepper, cover with olive oil and leave out on the counter over night.

Cut the fennel bulb in half and remove the root, then slice thinly on a mandoline. Toss the salad greens, cured persimmon, fennel and pomegranate seeds in a large bowl.

Whisk together the mustard, lemon juice, sherry vinegar, salt, pepper and honey in a small bowl. While whisking vigorously, slowly drizzle in the walnut oil followed by the olive oil. Fold in the toasted chopped walnuts and adjust seasoning.

To assemble, dress the salad with the vinaigrette and season as needed with salt and pepper. Place the salad in the middle of the plate and fan the duck breast over the top. Drizzle the pomegranate molasses over the breast.