1. Pre-heat an oven to 375°F (180°C). Score the duck fat taking care not to cut into the meat, and place skin-side down in a cold pan and place over a medium to high heat.
2. Once the fat begins to melt and coat the bottom of the pan, add the star anise, garlic and fresh thyme, and begin to baste the duck by spooning the oil over the duck breast. Continue basting until the fat becomes crispy, which will take around 6-7 minutes from when the pan comes up to temperature. Before placing the oven, turn the duck breast over and baste briefly with the skin-side up.
3. Place the duck into the oven for 5 to 6 minutes.
4. Leave the duck to rest for 2-3 minutes before serving alongside the marmalade.
Cape Gooseberry Marmalade
1. While the duck is cooking, in another pan add the oil, the chopped red onion and a little salt, and sauté until translucent.
2. Add the cape gooseberries and press down with the back of a spoon to release the juices. Then add the zest and juice of the orange.
3. Add the honey according to taste, and then allow the gooseberries to reduce until mixture becomes the consistency of a marmalade.
Making it your own: Sage's thoughts:
1. To compliment the richness of the duck, Sage uses cape gooseberries for their tartness, but other fruits like raspberries, blueberries, apricots or plumbs also works fantastically.
3. To baste the duck Sage adds star anise, thyme and garlic to the fat, but many other aromatics can be used such as rosemary or allspice berries.
4. If you would like your duck more on the rare side, do not use the oven, but instead leave the duck skin-side up for an extra 2-3 minutes.
How are you going to make it your own?