Thai Duck Red Curry with Pineapple

February 10, 2020 7 Comments

Duck breast Thai red curry with pineapple

(Updated). Meltingly tender duck combines wonderfully with the sharp and sweet flavours of pineapple and coconut in a Thai red curry sauce. I’m not normally a fan of pineapple in savoury dishes (put it on my pizza at your own risk!) but it really does work with this dish. I used to cook this with duck legs but so many people have told me they prefer to use duck breast so I have updated the recipe to reflect that fact. This also has the benefit of allowing the breast to be served pink with the sauce spooned over the duck breast instead of it being cooked in the sauce as it would be when using duck legs. How rare you wish to serve the duck breast is entirely a matter of personal taste, the difference involved is merely minutes. And talking of minutes, that is really all it takes to produce this dish so let’s go!

Ingredients for Thai Duck Red Curry with Pineapple

I like to cook this using a duck breast per person. 1 Can of coconut milk for two duck breasts. The Kaffir  lime leaves are optional as they are already in the paste but they make for a nice decoration on most Thai curry dishes. Check out the link for advice on where to buy. As always, make sure you’re using the “right” type of coconut milk as it will make or break this or any other coconut based curry. Quick guide here, Coconut Milk Summary.
Add the red curry paste to the pan with some of the coconut milk. If you have followed the advice above about the coconut milk then add the thicker part of the coconut milk to the pan, reserving the thinner portion to adjust the sauce later. 

Add coconut milk and curry paste to the pan
Heat through gently and bring to a simmer and put to one side.
If you’re using Kaffir lime leaves and you want to cut them finely as in the image at the top then see how to do it on this link, Kaffir Lime Chiffonade.
Cut and reserve any peppers you are using.
Cut pineapple into chunks. In an earlier recipe for this I used to cut the pineapple into fancy sections, pretty but time consuming and tricky for those who don't carve pineapples daily. Now I just advise people to cut it whichever way they feel comfortable with. Will this recipe work with canned pineapple? Probably, but you're asking the wrong person! I'm Thai and the whole concept of canned pineapple is alien to me:-)
Put the pineapple segments to one side.

Now we are going to cook the duck breast. I don’t feel it is necessary to score the skin of the duck in this recipe. You can do so if you wish, using a sharp knife but do make sure you don’t cut through to the flesh, and certainly not your own flesh!
Put just a little frying oil in the pan and cook the duck breasts skin side down at a medium heat for about five minutes.

Cook duck breast skin side down
Turn the duck breasts over and cook for around three minutes. Those timings should result in a rare to medium duck. The skin side of the duck should be nicely browned as below

Cook duck breast skin side down
Remove the duck breast from the pan but don’t throw away the cooking juices. Place the duck breasts on a plate to rest under a piece of foil.

Add the pineapple segments to the pan and let them cook in the juices turning them occasionally until they are caramelised around the edges. Remove from pan and reserve.

Saute pineapple in pan
Add the tomatoes to the pan and cook quite quickly until the skins begin to burst.

Add tomatoes to pan
Remove from the pan. Add any sliced peppers to the pan and fry quickly and remove.
Reheat the sauce adjusting the consistency as you go.
Slice the duck breast crosswise into sections as shown.

Duck Pineapple and Tomatoes ready for plating

Arrange on a plate and spoon sauce over and garnish as desired.

Serving Presentation Suggestion

If you like this recipe please click the star rating or add a comment below!  Kop Khun Kha, Nitsa.x



7 Responses

Bryan Summers
Bryan Summers

March 04, 2023

I was still thinking about this dish the day after we cooked it. Simply superb. Always a favourite dish but I have never been able to recreate it at home to match the offerings I’ve had from very good Thai restaurants in both Bangkok and Sydney. Finally, I managed to do just that. The recipe is easy but follow the advice on the coconut milk and the caramelization of the pineapple. Whatever you do make sure to cook it with this paste. Duck is not cheap, and it would be a waste to cook it with something you picked up from a supermarket.

Gordon little
Gordon little

March 23, 2021

Cooked this last night and it was stunning, I’ve ate a red Thai duck curry at the No1 rated Thai restaurant in Dubai, and hand on my heart the one I made last night wins , really good paste, can’t wait to try the others I purchased 😃


August 15, 2019

This is a winner. It’s better than any red duck Thai curry I tried and it’s super easy to make too. I added lychees at the 2nd attempt and it was even better. Thank you for sharing.


May 27, 2019

Simple and super easy to prepare and just Amazing flavours. This one is a keeper. Tastes even better than the one from our local thai restaurant.


June 30, 2018

Stunning, stunning recipe 👌🏻👌🏻 Tasted just like it does in a restaurant. Absolutely delicious x


February 05, 2018

Perfect, if you like a flavoursome curry with a little bit of heat, then this is the one. I used chicken and it goes down a treat with rice or pasta. Any jar of so called thai curry just doesn’t come close.


February 01, 2018

What a delicious recipe! I’m not normally a fan of fruit in my dinner and red curries I’ve had up until now have failed to impress, but this is so good, I could eat it almost daily if I could afford duck that often.

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