Magret de Canard (Duck Breast) and Courgette (Squash) Salad; the update

I usually post photos of mon mari’s progress on the house.

This week I decided to show you what I did over the weekend.

But first, a question….

At what age do we stop trying to do things the quick, cheap and easy way and start doing things the right way the first time around?

I didn’t want to spend the money and/or the time to properly secure the front garden (yard) from the bunnies.

Instead I bought Rabbit Repellent and Bunny Begone and all sorts of crap that was ‘guaranteed’ to work, none of which did.

The rabbits ignored it all.

I bought rolls of chicken wire to use to patch the big holes in the chain link fence that was being used as a Bunny Bypass and spent many hours doing fence repair.

The rabbits just found new places to make holes and dig trenches.

I ended up putting chicken wire around my herb garden which is already inside a chain link fence.

I tied string around the cow trough because they like to dig in the middle of the flowers – every night.


It all worked, but I didn’t like it.

And the bunnies were getting bolder.

Friday I decided it was time to concede defeat and do a proper job.

I went to the garden store and bought 60 meters of little wood fencing.

I spent the weekend attaching it to the chain link.

The little bunnies could run right through the chain link.

Now they’ll hit their little heads.  Oof!

I’m pretty sure they won’t try to jump through the links.

Yes, I know the big rabbits can still dig underneath, but, for some reason, wherever there were boards along the fence, put their by the old man that used to live here, the rabbits left it alone.  I’m hoping that if they can’t see the other side they won’t try to dig. And if they do dig, there is still the chain link on the other side of the wood.

I can hope, can’t I?

Rabbits aren’t that smart are they?

Don’t the flowers look better without the string?


As long as we’re looking at gardens…. My herb garden is starting to fill in:


I thought I had lost all my basil with the cold, wet weather we had for a few weeks.  A lot of the leaves turned brown and black but new growth came – thankfully.  Hate to lose the basil just as the tomatoes start.

It’s finally looking like summer:


Oh yeah – mon mari put up the ceiling in the bathroom – and insulated it! Yay!


Romaine lettuce is still going strong in the garden. The courgette are going crazy.

A salad seemed in order for dinner…. Duck Salad.

Magret de Canard (Duck Breast) Salad

Duck and Courgette Salad

1 duck breast
2 tbs Balsamic vinegar
1 tbs soy sauce
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp dried thyme
lettuce – enough for 2 main meal salads
3/4 cup cherry tomatoes
2 small summer squash
1/3 cup pimiento-stuffed olives
1 tsp paprika
2 tsp olive oil
2 tbs fresh basil
2 tbs fresh chives
2 tbs fresh oregano
Tomato Vinaigrette

Cross-hatch the fat on the duck breast. In small bowl mix vinegar, soy sauce, garlic and thyme for marinade. Pour marinade over duck and let marinate for 10 – 15 minutes.
Cook duck breast on barbecue starting fat side down for 5 minutes. Make
certain barbecue is away from dried weeds, dried wood and low
trees. With long tongs turn breast over (mind your eyebrows) and
continue cooking another 5 minutes. If there is any fat left on fat side
put fat side down for a few minutes to burn off. Remove from heat and
take a peak (stick knife in center and make a cut) If done to your
liking let rest a minute. It should be red to pink, more done will make
it dry and tough. Let rest 5 minutes, then slice thinly

Slice squash into 1/3″ (1cm) rounds.  Heat 2 tsp olive oil and paprika in a skillet.  Add squash and sauté until lightly browned on both sides, about 8 minutes total.
Cut tomatoes in half.  Tear large basil leaves.  Snip chives. Prepare lettuce. Make vinaigrette.
Put lettuce and herbs in a large salad .  Add half the vinaigrette and toss to combine.  Arrange squash slices, tomatoes, duck and olives on top, drizzle with remaining vinaigrette and serve.

Tomato Vinaigrette

2 tbs ketchup
2 tbs Balsamic vinegar
1 tsp Dijon-style mustard
1/4 tsp paprika
3 tbs olive oil, the good stuff

Mix ketchup, vinegar, mustard and paprika. Slowly add olive oil, whisking constantly.

Note – if there are typos in this – sorry – it’s mon mari’s birthday and he’s waiting to go out…… gotta run…

15 thoughts on “Magret de Canard (Duck Breast) and Courgette (Squash) Salad; the update”

  1. “Bunny Begone” – oh you crack me up!! My mom always said to do things properly the first time, and I generally do (costs be damned!) but my husband has not yet reached the point where he thinks like this. It’s an uphill struggle!! Love the salad – any salad featuring duck cannot be a bad thing…

  2. Katie What a delightful garden, it’s beautiful so peaceful except for Bunny warriors I guess. Oh you might like to know I tried to buy duck fat from my local shop…they only had goose fat It was expensive so I roasted some potatoes for my Tour de France Challenge, Fantastic. Now it is in my fridge might treat the grandchildren on Thursday when they come for dinner.

  3. Your neighbors must be thrilled to see that lovely old place being upgraded and loved. Good luck repelling the bunnies! Maybe you need a terrier to terrify them?

  4. Great pictures. The garden just slays me — as I sit here in the American Southwestern desert fighting for anything green. Except weeds. Weeds seem to love the desert. The six foot high stone walls DO deter the occasional rabbit, however.

  5. You know that Aerosmith song, Janie’s got a gun? She got it to shoot rabbits for the pot! Probably got a duck or two. Nice job.

  6. I think we always go for the quick fix matter how old we get.
    Love this salad! It’s summer in a bowl!

  7. Quel beau jardin! (I so wanted “jardin” to be feminine so I could write “Quel belle jardin” … oooh wait!! I can have my cake and eat it too: quel belles fleurs! – yes, yes, I know. It’s no doubt grammatically incorrect.) Anyway, back on topic: I do envy you your garden. It looks wonderful. Our weather has been pretty good and our basil doesn’t look nearly as fabulous as yours!
    I also envy you having that lovely duck salad. The duck looks so tender!

  8. It’s so nice to see pics of your garden, Katie. I do hope the wood fencing does the trick with the bunnies. You know, calling them bunnies just encourages them – makes them feel all cute, like they can do no wrong. Try another name for them. I know you’ve got one… 🙂
    That duck breast salad is gorgeous! I wish duck breasts weren’t so darned expensive here.

  9. Your garden is lovely and shows so much attention to detail. I am planting more basil today and dill too. Somehow I forgot that originally and need it for the cucumbers. The salad looks wonderful. You have inspired me!

  10. Jaw dropping. Duck salad, you’ve given me a craving. And the garden/yard/flowers … it’s worth the work to keep those devils out. Christine’s right, shouldn’t call them bunnies.

  11. Jeanne, I used to be like that…. then hubs convinced me to be cheap – going back to the old ways.
    Gilli, goose fat is much better – but expensive here, too. And usually only available in late fall.
    Ina, if this doesn’t work I concede defeat.
    Zoomie, my dogs don’t even scare them any more. They just hop out of reach, stop and laugh.
    Pam, they can continue to eat the farmer’s wheat field.
    Kirsten, I would have been – just as the tomatoes are getting ripe. Now – pesto!
    TikiPundit, cactus? A very zen-like weed, cactus and rock garden?
    Peter, the hubs is an expert at grilling the duck. I’ll pass on the compliment
    Neil, I don’t have a gun….yet. If they get in now….
    Joanne, it’s like biting your tongue – we should know better!
    Elizabeth, the duck is wonderful. The breasts come from the ducks used for foie gras. Politically incorrect breasts.
    Christine, yes, well I do call them something else when alone…. One of the babies got in the other day…. Damn cute thing!
    Penny, I wish I could send you some dill. I planted lots and it will be done before the cukes even start. I never get that timed right!
    Tanna, at least they have stayed out of the lettuce!

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