Recipe Shed: Balinese grilled duck breasts in a coconut and spinach sauce

I have no idea why this is a Balinese dish as my well-travelled wife swears blind there are no ducks in Bali (based on the fact she didn’t see any when she was there). But hey-ho, there should be.

Anyway, this is from my own Recipe Book, which I clearly nicked from another recipe book, but I can’t remember which one.

This dish is aromatic and spicy, with superb crunchy skin and gorgeous juicy flesh. The sauce is to die for and will turn you in Popeye, if that is the way you’re inclined.

Serves 2

2 duck breasts
2 handfuls of fresh spinach


1 can coconut milk
2 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp cinnamon powder
1 tsp nutmeg
2 bay leaves
3 cloves
3 garlic cloves, peeled
Thumb sized piece of ginger, roughly chopped
3 cardamon pods
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp aniseeds
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp salt

1. Put all the marinade ingredients in a food processor and blitz until smooth. Gently cook in a frying pan for 5 mins and allow to cool.

2. Slash the duck breasts with a sharp knife, then over the marinade and put in the fridge for two hours or overnight.


3. Take the duck out of the marinade and pour the excess into a small saucepan. Shred the spinach and add it to the marinade. Gently heat through until the spinach has wilted, approx. 5 mins.

4. Meanwhile, preheat the over to 190C/Gas 5 then place the duck breasts on a rack so that the fat can drain. Cook for 20-25 mins, until the meat is pink, but with no blood.


5. Serve with new potatoes and the coconut and spinach sauce/marinade.


• I love to marinate more than any other form of cooking, so please share yours if you will, below…

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Filed under Poultry, Recipe Shed

4 Responses to Recipe Shed: Balinese grilled duck breasts in a coconut and spinach sauce

  1. Anton1a

    Funnily enough, I was only talking yesterday about the fact that I would like more duck recipes (I have two recipes and that’s it). Duck is truly delicious and we don’t eat it often enough. I can guarantee that I will try this recipe in the coming weeks. Thank you Keith :)

  2. Had duck only the other week. It was good, this looks better. Enjoy the hideously complex chicken marinade. Hard work but rewarding.

  3. They do have ducks in Bali. I had some there last year, fried to a crisp and one of the best I ever had… the restaurant was called the drunken duck and specialised in… duck. Because they saw some in the rice fields when they were building the restaurant. So, yes, there are ducks in Bali.

  4. Keith, I know this should be all about the duck, but that spinach looks delicious you always share recipes that I would really like to eat… & I know I’m late as usual eek x