Try this Mauritian recipe for delicious, simple, falling-off-the-bone duck curry in a rich, thick sauce. It's full of flavour but less tricky to make than other curries as it relies on curry powder rather than paste.  You'll find the best curry powder at Indian grocers. This dish is lovely served with shallot achard (pickled vegetables).






Skill level

Average: 3.2 (129 votes)


  • 8 cm piece of ginger, chopped 
  • 6–8 large garlic cloves, chopped 
  • 1–2 small red chillies 
  • salt
  • 1 duck (1.5–1.8 kg)
  • freshly ground white pepper
  • vegetable oil 
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped 
  • small handful curry leaves 
  • 4 tbsp good-quality Indian curry powder, mixed with water to make a wet paste
  • 4 medium-sized ripe tomatoes, seeds removed, roughly chopped
  • ½ bunch coriander, roughly chopped

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Place the ginger, garlic, chilli and a pinch of salt in a mortar and pound to a paste.

Trim the duck of excess skin and fat. Chop the duck into medium-sized pieces, leaving the drumsticks whole. Place the pieces in a bowl and season well with salt and white pepper, tossing to coat.

Heat a large, heavy-based saucepan over medium–high heat. When hot, add a little oil and brown the duck pieces in batches. When all the pieces are browned, remove them from the pan and turn the heat down to medium. There should be a little melted duck fat left in the pan.

Add the onion and sauté until light brown. Add the ginger, garlic and chilli paste. Fry for about 2 minutes, then turn the heat down to medium–low and add the curry leaves and curry powder. Cook, stirring, for another 2 minutes. Add a little water, the duck pieces and any juices. Mix well and add extra water to come halfway up the contents of the pan. Season to taste. Bring to the boil then cover with a lid and simmer for 45–60 minutes, stirring occasionally until the meat is tender and almost falling off the bone.

Remove the lid and add the tomato. Turn the heat up a little to allow the tomato to break down and the sauce to reduce. Check the seasoning and add the coriander just before serving.