4boneless duck breasts Pekin/Long Island, or 1 pork tenderloin - see notes
1tablespooncoconut or vegetable oil
1red bell pepper, seeded and sliced into thin strips
1-1/2 to 2tablespoonsred curry paste, see notes
2tablespoonsfreshly squeezed lime juice
2mangoes, peeled, pitted, and cut into chunks
2tablespoonschopped fresh cilantro
4servings cooked Jasmine rice
Being careful not to cut into the meat, score the skin on each duck breasts in a crosshatch pattern at 1/4-inch intervals. Season both sides with salt and pepper.
Place the duck breasts, skin side down in a heavy frying pan over medium heat (about 275°F) to render the fat. You want to see the fat begin to melt and sizzle slightly, but you are not trying to achieve a quick sear at this point.
Without turning, continue cooking the duck for 6 to 10 minutes, or until the majority of the fat has rendered from the breast and the skin is golden brown and crisp.
Once the duck skin is crisp, pour off the fat and turn the breasts over. Raise the heat slightly and continue cooking until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast registers 125°F (medium-rare), 3 to 6 minutes.
Transfer the duck breasts to a cutting board and allow them to rest for 10 minutes before cutting into 1/4-inch thick slices.
While the duck is cooking, add the coconut milk, curry paste, fish sauce, sugar, and lime juice to a bowl and whisk until smooth and well blended. Taste and add more curry paste if desired. Set aside.
Return the pan you cooked the duck to the stove over medium-high heat.
Add the minced garlic and red bell pepper strips and stir-fry just until the garlic is fragrant, 1 minute.
Stir in the coconut milk mixture and bring it to a slow simmer. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring often, then add the mango and scallions.
Return the duck to the pan, coat in sauce, and simmer just long enough to heat through.
To serve, plate individual portions of jasmine rice, duck, mango, and bell pepper. Spoon some sauce over each serving and garnish with chopped cilantro.
Transfer the remaining sauce to a serving bowl to pass at the table.
Tips for Making This Recipe
Pork tenderloin variation:
Pork tenderloin can be substituted for the duck in this recipe. Here's how to prepare it:
Trim the silverskin from the tenderloin, quarter it lengthwise and cut it into bite-sized chunks.
Season lightly with freshly ground black pepper and a pinch of salt.
Add a small amount of oil to a frying pan and place over medium-high heat.
Add the pork and stir fry until lightly browned on the outside and rosy pink inside. Do not overcook.
Remove from the pan and proceed with the balance of the recipe as written.
About Thai red curry paste:
How much curry paste you add to this dish is a matter of taste that depends on the brand you use and how spicy it is.There are a number of brands of pre-made Thai curry paste on the market. Our favorite is called Aroy-D, a product of Thailand that can be purchased in Asian grocery stores or online from Amazon or ImportFood.com.