Pappardelle with Tomato Braised Duck

Image source: Photographer Dave Gleeson

Pappardelle with Tomato Braised Duck, Fennel and Olives

Serves 4

Pappardelle is a long ribbon pasta a lot like a wide fettucine, most commonly served with some form of braised meat sauce. This combination of the richness of duck, the acidity of tomatoes, the sweetness of fennel and briny black olives is a perfect balance and one of my all-time favourite ragus. 


• 2 tbs olive oil

• 1 onion, sliced

• 2 cloves garlic

• 1/2 tsp fennel seeds

• 2 bay leaves

• 2 tbs tomato paste

• 500gm roma tomatoes, diced

• 500ml chicken stock

• Pinch saffron

• Salt and pepper

• 4 duck marylands

• 500 gm pappardelle pasta

•2 small fennel bulbs, cut into wedges

• 1/2 cup pitted black olives

• 75 gm grated parmesan


• In a medium saucepan, fry the onion, garlic, fennel seeds and bay leaves in the olive oil for 2 – 3 minutes.

• Add the tomato paste and stir over the heat for another 30 seconds.

• Add the diced tomatoes and chicken stock and season with salt and pepper. Simmer gently for 15 minutes.

• Trim any excess fat from the duck marylands and fry them skin side down in a heavy based frypan over a medium heat until they are well coloured. Turn and fry on the other side for a few minutes, then transfer to a casserole dish or deep oven proof tray.

• Pour over the tomato sauce, add the olives and cover with a tight-fitting lid or a double layer of foil.

• Bake for 2 hours at 150°C.

• Remove the duck from the sauce and allow to cool. Skim off any excess fat from the top of the braising liquid with a spoon.

• Once cool, roughly break up the duck off the bones and add back to the sauce.

• Lightly oil the fennel, season with salt, and spread in a single layer on a tray lined with baking paper. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes at 180°C or until softened and slightly caramelised.

• Cook the pappardelle in a large pot of salted boiling water until al dente. (there are lots of different types of pappardelle that take different amounts of time to cook, so check the packet for instructions).

• Gently warm the duck sauce, and when the pasta is cooked, drain it and toss it through the sauce with the fennel.

• Serve straight from the casserole dish with freshly-grated parmesan and crusty bread.

About the Author /

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Matt Golinski is a highly regarded chef with a passion for simple, produce-driven cuisine based on seasonal, fresh local ingredients. He is an active member of the Slow Food movement, a champion of artisan producers and a generous mentor to keen young chefs. He is the Food and Culinary Tourism Ambassador for the Gympie region; Ambassador and Advisory Executive Chef for Peppers Noosa; and a festival favourite.

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