Tuck Into Some Tuscan Specials

Posted on: 04 December 2008 by Gareth Hargreaves

Learn how to cook a typical Tuscan dish with our video guide by TV chefs Giancarlo and Katie Caldesi.


The husband and wife duo Giancarlo and Katie Caldesi cook up traditional Italian food at the Tuscan Caldesi and Caffe Caldesi in London and Caldesi in Campagna in Berkshire.

English-born Katie is the principal of their cookery school, La Cucina Caldesi, in London. She is a keen cook having learnt her love of food from her mother's kitchen. Giancarlo remains very Italian, in spite of having spent the last 30 years living and working in the UK.

The Caldesis starred in television show, Return To Tuscany, shown on BBC Two and UKTV Food, and have published two books, Return To Tuscany and Italian Mama’s Kitchen and Katie is currently writing their third.

In this video they show you how to cook Duck with Cherries in Gabbiano Chianti, a rustic Tuscan recipe.

The Recipe

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 4 duck breasts
  • 400g cherries
  • 50g sugar
  • 150ml orange juice
  • 500ml Gabbiano Chianti DOCG (reduces to 150ml in around half an hour)
  • 50g sugar

Method:

Pre heat the oven to 180°C. Cut the cherries in half and remove the stones. Put them into an ovenproof dish and pour over the orange juice then sprinkle over the sugar. Put the dish into the oven and bake for 25 minutes or so until the cherries have softened and browned a little. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Meanwhile pour the Gabbiano Chianti wine into a saucepan with the sugar and bring to the boil. Turn it down to a simmer and leave for around half an hour so that it reduces to around a third of its volume.

Season the duck breasts with salt and pepper and fry in hot oil in a frying pan. Fry skin side down first and then turn them over, around ten minutes a side or until done. Meanwhile pour the cherries into the wine, bring back to the boil.

Turn down to a simmer and reduce for around five minutes until the sauce has reduced and thickened. Slice the duck breasts and arrange on a warmed serving dish.  Pour over the sauce and serve with plenty of creamy mashed potato.

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