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Orzo and duck salad with mini bocconcini and tapenade

  • Preparation : 35 minutes
  • Cooking : 20 minutes
  • Portions : 4 to 6
Salade d’orzo et de canard


  • 2-3 Brome Lake duck breasts
  • 1 200-g container of mini bocconcini, drained
  • 60 ml (4 tbsp) store-bought tapenade (olive purée)
  • 75 ml (5 tbsp) olive oil
  • 30 ml (2 tbsp) lemon juice
  • 10 ml (2 tsp) liquid honey
  • Dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper
  • 500 ml (2 cups) orzo
  • 375 ml (1½ cup) multi-coloured cherry tomatoes, cut into 2 or 3
  • 30-45 ml (2-3 tbsp) fresh chives, chopped


  1. Place the mini bocconcini and tapenade in a small bowl and combine. Place in the refrigerator. In a large salad bowl, whisk the oil with the lemon juice and honey. Season with the oregano, salt and pepper to your taste and set aside.

  2. Cook the orzo "al dente" according to the instructions on the package. Rinse thoroughly under cold water in a fine strainer, and then drain. Add the orzo to the bowl with the dressing, then add the cherry tomatoes and chives. Mix and set aside.

  3. Preheat the barbecue to high heat, keeping one burner off. Remove some of the excess skin from the ends of each duck breast, and then make incisions in the skin in a crosswise pattern, without piercing the meat. Season the meat with salt and pepper to your taste. Set aside.

  4. Place duck breasts over direct heat and sear for 90 seconds skin-side down, and turn them over once. Continue cooking the breasts over indirect heat for 8 to 10 minutes, skin-side down. Finish cooking over direct heat for 2 minutes, skin-side up. Keep a close eye on the duck while cooking to avoid flare-ups. If flare-ups occur, move the meat around and flip it over.

  5. Remove the duck breasts from the grill and let them sit for 5 minutes covered loosely with a sheet of aluminum foil.

  6. Remove the skin from the breasts and slice the meat thinly on the diagonal. Add the meat to the salad and mix.

  7. Garnish each serving with the bocconcini and tapenade mixture and serve immediately with hummus and Swiss sticks.

Recipe developed by Nicolas Vallée, professional chef

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