This recipe was inspired by a Thai dish called laap, which is made with minced or ground chicken, fish, pork, or duck and seasoned with the wonderful flavors of chiles, ginger, fish sauce, and citrus. I decided to use the same flavors with a seared duck breast and make it into more of a main-course salad. This is a refreshing take on northern Thai street food.
- 2 tablespoons tablespoon uncooked jasmine rice
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh red Thai bird chile
- 2 magret duck breasts (about 12 ounces each) or 1 1⁄2 pounds other domestic duck breasts
- 1⁄3 cup minced shallot
- 1 1⁄2 tablespoon peeled and minced fresh ginger
- 1⁄4 cup fish sauce
- 1⁄4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1⁄4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoon palm sugar or light brown sugar
- 1⁄2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
- 1⁄2 cup fresh mint leaves
- 1⁄2 cup fresh basil leaves
- 1 medium head of red leaf lettuce, washed and torn into bite-sized pieces
- 2 cup bean sprouts
- 1 cup julienned red bell pepper
- Heat a wok over medium-high heat and add the rice. Toast the rice, shaking the wok constantly, until all the grains have turned golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer the rice to a mortar and set aside to cool. Once the rice has cooled, grind it using a pestle until it reaches a sandy consistency. Alternatively, grind the toasted rice in a clean spice grinder. Place the rice in a large mixing bowl and set aside.
- Place the chile in the wok over medium-high heat and cook, shaking the wok, until lightly colored and fragrant, 30 to 60 seconds. Remove the chile from the pan and add to the bowl with the rice.
- Using a paring knife, score the fatty side of the duck breasts by making shallow cuts in a diamond pattern; this allows the fat to render more easily. Place the duck breasts in the wok, fatty side down, and cook over medium heat until the skin is golden brown and slightly crisp, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer the duck breasts to a cutting board, slice them into thin strips, and return the strips to the wok. Add the shallot and ginger and stir-fry over medium-high heat until the duck is just cooked through, about 2 minutes. Transfer the duck from the wok to the bowl with the rice and chile and set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine the fish sauce, lime juice, orange juice, and palm sugar and mix well. Pour the mixture over the duck and toss until well coated. Add the cilantro, mint, basil, lettuce, bean sprouts, and julienned red pepper and toss to combine.
- Serve the salad immediately