Canard au Poivre de Joe Beef

This dish is incredibly flavorful and decadent while somehow being simple to make. How can you beat that? It features duck which is incredibly flavorful and horribly underrepresented in most people's diets. I believe it is important to increase the diversity of the genetic strains that humanity relies on and to better appreciate a wider variety of dishes.

Joe Beef is a restaurant in Montreal I have never had the pleasure of dining at, but if their book is any indication it would be an incredible experience. Their book features a number of decadent recipes that hearken back to an earlier time, and also features a section on trains. If that intrigues you I suggest watching the Canada episode of Anthony Bourdain's Parts Unknown which features the men behind Joe Beef.


  • 1 large duck breast half, about 15 ounces (420 g)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ground black or green peppercorns
  • Salt
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon chopped French shallot
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon brined green peppercorns, drained and patted dry
  • 2 tablespoons Cognac
  • ½ cup (125 ml) beef stock
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) whipping cream


  1. Heat the oil in a pan and sear the duck breast (seasoned with salt and pepper) on each side for a minute and a half on each side for rare (medium-rare = 2 minutes); remove from pan and set aside
  2. Add butter to ban and sweat shallots for 4-5 minutes on medium-low heat
  3. Add mustard, brined green peppercorns, and Cognac; Mix for 30 seconds
  4. Increase heat to medium/medium-high and add stock. Reduce until syrupy; about 2 minutes
  5. Add cream and reduce for about another 2 minutes
  6. Return duck to the pan to warm it up. Serve either in the pan or on a platter

From The Art of Living According to Joe Beef , published by Ten Speed Press