TAGLIATELLE AL RAGU D’ANATRA (from Venice, with duck, for four)

 Pasta, tagliatelle al ragu d'anatra (duck from Venice) 1  Pasta, tagliatelle al ragu d'anatra(duck from Venice) 2

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 teaspoon olive oil

one 1 pound boneless Muscovy duck breast with skin or two 7 to 8 ounce Long Island (also called Pekin) duck breast halves with skin

½ medium onion, chopped

1 garlic clove, smashed

1 teaspoon chopped rosemary

½ cup dry red wine

2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth

one 14 to 15 ounce can whole tomatoes in juice, drained, reserving juice, and chopped

½ pound fresh tagliatelle or dried egg fettucine

  • Pat duck dry and sprinkle with ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper.
  1. Heat butter and oil in a deep 10-inch heavy skillet over medium heat until foam subsides. Sear duck, skin side down, until golden and some of the fat has rendered, about 6 minutes.  Turn over and cook until browned, about 2 minutes more.  Transfer duck to a plate, then add onion to fat in skillet with garlic, rosemary and 1/8 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is softened and golden brown, about 6 minutes.  Add wine and boil 3 minutes.
  1. Return duck, skin side up, to skillet, then add any juices from the plate, stock, and tomatoes with their juice. Bring to a boil, then gently simmer, covered, for 1 hour.
  1. Transfer duck to a cutting board, then skim off and discard about three-fourths of the fat from the sauce.
  1. Puree sauce in batches in a blender (use caution when blending hot liquids). Return sauce to skillet and boil, stirring occasionally, until reduced to about 2-1/2 cups, about 8 minutes.
  1. While sauce reduces, remove and discard skin and underlying layer of fat from the duck breast. Shred the duck meat and return it to the sauce.  Season the ragu with salt and pepper.
  1. Cook tagliatelle in a pasta pot of boiling salted water (3 tablespoons salt for 6 quarts water) until al dente (only 2 to 3 minutes for fresh tagliatelle, and 12 to 13 minutes from when the water returns to a boil for dried tagliatelle), then drain and toss with duck ragu (Duck ragu can be made 1 day ahead and chilled, covered, once cool).

adapted from Gourmet Magazine, April, 2008

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