What is Duck Magret?

Duck magret –  or duck breast – is the new steak. And the rich, red meat of duck breast is every bit as satisfying as beef. Many restaurants now offer it on the menu, and people are searing duck breasts at home for quick weeknight meals. Duck breast has arrived. But once upon a time, say 30 years ago, it was not that way.


In 1985, when Ariane founded D’Artagnan and became the first purveyor of fresh, domestic foie gras in the United States, she had a lot of other duck parts to deal with.

Many years before that, her father Chef André Daguin, had raw duck breasts in the kitchen waiting to be submerged in duck fat and turned into confit. A hungry customer, too late for lunch, arrived and there was not much left in the larder. Chef Daguin pan seared a duck breast, treating it like a steak. This interesting – and delicious – new idea took fire. Soon everyone in Southwest France was searing duck breasts and serving them rare.

Ariane and Dad with Geese

And Ariane came to the United States with that history. So the plump breasts of the ducks quickly became a signature D’Artagnan product. And duck magret has remained one of our most popular items for the past 30 years.

If you’ve never tried “duck steak,” don’t hesitate. It’s easy to prepare, as you can see in this video, where Sara Moulton and Ariane cook duck breast together. It’s also quick – a 30-minute meal with duck breast at the center is a reality. Not sure where to start? We have plenty of duck recipes at dartagnan.com to guide you.

Ariane and Sara at the stove with duck breasts in the pan.

If you make duck magret at home, be sure to share photos with us on social media! We are @dartagnanfoods on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Tag us – we love to see what’s cooking!


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