Duck ragu with pappardelle & swede

A plate of food on a table Easy Healthy Recipes

Preparation and cooking time

  • Prep:30 mins
  • Cook:1 hr and 20 mins
  • Easy
  • Serves 4

Substituting half your pasta for swede ribbons and the breast of the duck rather than the leg makes this a leaner, but equally delicious, ragu

Nutrient Unit
kcal 471
fat 11g
saturates 2g
carbs 49g
sugars 21g
fibre 9g
protein 32g
salt 0.5g


For the ragu

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 duck breasts , skin removed
  • 1 onion , finely chopped
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ small pack parsley , leaves picked and stalks finely chopped
  • 8 thyme sprigs , leaves picked
  • 150ml red wine
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 400g can plum tomatoes
  • 200ml stock
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp raisins
  • toasted pine nuts and parmesan, to serve
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For the pasta

  • fresh pappardelle
  • 750g swede (1 large or 2 small) peeled, then cut into thick ribbons using a vegetable peeler


  • STEP 1

Heat 1 tbsp of the olive oil in a large deep frying pan over a high heat and fry the duck breasts for 2 mins on either side until well browned, then set aside. Tip the fat from the frying pan into a dish (keep it for later use if you like), and turn the heat on the pan down to medium, then add the rest of the olive oil. Tip the onion and fennel seeds into the pan, add a large pinch of salt and cook for 5 mins until the onion is starting to soften. Crush in the garlic cloves, then add the bay leaf, parsley stalks and thyme leaves. Stir well and cook for 2 mins more.

  • STEP 2
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Turn the heat up, then pour in the red wine and cook for 2 mins until it has reduced a little. Spoon in the tomato purée and tip in the can of tomatoes along with the stock, stir and bring to the boil, then turn the heat down to low and return the duck breasts to the pan, cover and simmer very gently for 40-45 mins or until the meat is tender.

  • STEP 3
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Remove the duck breasts with a slotted spoon, put in a bowl, turn the heat up and reduce the tomato sauce for 10 mins until thick enough to coat your pasta. Use two forks to shred the duck, then tip the meat back into the sauce. Add the red wine vinegar and raisins, then season to taste. Set aside.

  • STEP 4
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When ready to serve, cook your pasta. Heat a large pan of well salted water, add the pappardelle and cook following pack instructions. For the final minute of cooking time, drop in the swede. Drain, reserving a ladleful of the pasta water to add to the sauce. Toss the pasta and swede through the sauce. Divide between bowls and top with the toasted pine nuts, parmesan and a scattering of parsley.

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