Duck in passionfruit and Rum sauce with quick-pickled celeriac | Festive Food


Hoping you all had a wonderful Christmas despite the crazy times we find ourselves in. This week we’re publishing not one, but two festive recipes for your New Years Eve table!  So keep an eye out for our final recipe of the series: Coffee, chocolate and orange braided stollen.

A note from the chef

This recipe is a great dish to serve on New Years Eve.  I learnt the technique for making the sauce at Lesley Waters Cookery School whilst working with her.  Making a deep caramel with the pan juices to make a delicious sweet and savoury sauce.  This is my variation of the sauce and it’s a real crowd pleaser!

Festive Food so far

Steve has shared amazing festive recipes to add to your recipe book.  Print them out and save them, we’re sure they’ll be future family favourites!

Chocolate and cherry mince pies with sloe gin butter

Smoked salmon ceviche in tigers milk with coriander oil

Dreaming of a white Christmas cake

Duck with passionfruit and rum sauce and pickled celeriac

Duck with passionfruit and rum sauce and pickled celeriac

Course: Main Course
Keyword: duck, new year food


  • Mandolin or very sharp knife
  • scales
  • Measuring jug/spoons
  • Oven proof frying pan


  • 4 duck breasts
  • 75 g caster sugar + 1/2 tsp for the pickle
  • 1 1/2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 50 ml dark rum
  • 2 passionfruit halved and pulp removed
  • 200 ml chicken stock
  • 1 small celeriac
  • 150 ml rice wine vinegar for pickling


  • Peel the skin off the celeriac using a knife and using a mandolin or a very sharp knife slice the celeriac into half and then into very thin slices.
  • Pour over the vinegar for pickle, the 1/2 tsp of sugar and good pinch of salt.
  • Mix together thoroughly and leave to pickle until ready to serve.

For the duck

  • Heat the oven to 180°c
  • Place an oven proof frying pan over high heat until hot.
  • Score the duck breasts, only score the skin dont go deep enough to cut the flesh
  • Sprinkle liberally with salt.
  • Once the pan is hot but not smoking, add the duck skin side down. You don't need any oil as the duck will release enough fat.
  • Turn the heat down to medium-high and leave for 5 minutes skin side down until the fat has rendered and the skin is beautiful golden and crisp.
  • Place the pan into the oven with the skin side down for 3 minutes. Then turn the duck over and place in the oven for another 3 minutes.
  • Remove the duck from the oven onto a board to rest.

To make the sauce

  • Pour away most of the fat from the duck leaving about 1tbsp of duck fat with all the lovely juices.
  • TOP TIP: Reserve the rest of the fat to make gorgeous roast potatoes.
  • Place back on the hob over a medium high heat.
  • Sprinkle the 75g sugar evenly over the base of the pan and cook until a tan caramel is formed. Don't burn the sugar or will be bitter.
  • Very quickly add the rice vinegar for the sauce, be careful as it will spit.
  • Stir to combine and then pour in the rum and if brave enough, set alight. If not just reduce until syrupy again.
  • Add the passionfruit and the stock to the pan and stir through.
  • Bring back to the boil and reduce until it just coats the back of the spoon.
  • Taste and season with salt and pepper.

To serve

  • Slice your duck and place on a plate or platter, pour over the sauce and serve with the pickled celeriac. Enjoy!