Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Dec 14, 2013 12:54 PM

Duck fat question.

When plating duck breast, is it inappropriate to remove the fat before serving to the guest?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. The fat should be rendered in the cooking process, so all you're left with is med-rare breast and crispy skin.

    1. The perfect duck breast has the fat rendered out during cooking, and is served with crispy skin intact which is the highlight.
      Edit: lingua beat me to it.

      6 Replies
      1. re: Veggo

        Hmmm... Well, It's evident I'm doing it wrong! My duck breast comes out perfectly med-rare, but I am always left with a layer of subcutaneous fat that never seems to render completely out.

        1. re: redips

          Start with the scored skin down in a cold pan and turn it to med-hi. Don't add extra fat. The skin will crisp up in its own fat, and there shouldn't be any fatty layer left, save for perhaps a tiny one.

          1. re: linguafood

            That technique has always been what I considered tried and true. Perhaps more time on the skin side, and much less time on the flesh side (which is not much to begin with....).

            Thank you!

          2. re: redips

            I agree with lingua - the scoring is a lot of sharp knife punctures through the skin - every half inch or so - but not into the flesh.

            1. re: redips

              A LITTLE subcutaneous fat is normal, so long as the skin is crispy.

          3. Yes. People can decide whether they want to eat it or not, but removing it entirely deprives many diners of the most lucious part of the dish.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Karl S

              I cook duck quite often and I never really get rid of the fat layer completely - a lot of it sure, but completely no. I like that fat and would definitely include the skin and any small layer of fat that remains on each slice.

            2. I made seared duck breast for the first time this week. The skin was great but I admit the meat itself was pretty tasty. Does anyone remove the skin and just enjoy the meat or is the skin a primary reason that you're eating it?

              3 Replies
              1. re: fldhkybnva

                I am sure there must be some poor souls who must or do. Like people who don't eat egg yolks.

                1. re: Karl S

                  I imagine I will join that crowd, I love whole eggs but enjoy egg white omelets, frittatas, and scrambled quite often :) both have merits to me