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A Duck Pastrami Recipe From the Crew Behind Brooklyn Restaurant Olmsted

Olmsted wine director Zwann Grays pairs the recipe with one of the bottles from Eater Wine Club

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Olmsted [Official Photo]

When Brooklyn’s lauded Olmsted reopened its doors in May, after a pandemic-forced closure, waits for coveted tables had turned into waits for perusing rows of the restaurant’s favorite items at its new Trading Post. The pivot (to use that tired phrase) from restaurant to grocery store, basically, was a savvy one; from homemade products like XO sauce and lobster bolognese to items sourced by the Olmsted team (think produce from the nearby farmers’ market or bottles of wine), the goods filling the Trading Post’s shelves are ideal for creating a special meal at home.

Very quickly, one of the most in-demand items became the duck pastrami, one of more than 10 duck items that chef Greg Baxtrom and chef de cuisine Taylor Hester have on offer at the Trading Post. The duck pastrami comes speckled with a heady mix of anise, fennel seed, tarragon, and brown mustard seed; it’s perfect on its own, though regulars of Olmsted have been known to add it to homemade breakfast sandwiches or on a piece of toast with grain mustard and pickled shallots.

It also happens to pairs well with wine from Eater Wine Club, our monthly wine subscription that’s curated this month by Olmsted’s wine director Zwann Grays. If you’re not part of the club, you’ve got a few days to get in to receive Zwann’s wines. (After next week, you’ll be subscribed to get December’s wines — curator and theme to come!) In the meantime, take a stab at making your own duck pastrami with the recipe below from the Olmsted crew... or if you’re in New York, you can always stop by the Trading Post.

Duck Pastrami


12 small duck breasts, the recipe can also be cut in half

For the brine:
7.5 liters water
600 grams salt
75 grams pink salt
450 grams sugar
3 bay leaves
1 head garlic
20 grams fennel seed
20 grams anise
40 grams black peppercorn
1 bunch tarragon
Juice and peel from 1 orange

For the rub:
300 grams black pepper
200 grams coriander
100 grams brown mustard seed

Step 1: Brine duck breasts for 48 hours. Meanwhile, grind whole spices for rub.

Step 2: Once brining is finished, remove from brine and semi-dry. Apply rub generously to duck breasts.

Step 3: Smoke for two hours at 167 degrees with hickory wood chips.