Lockdown duck frites
So before The Unpleasantness hit, we went to Auchan, a "hypermarché" in the mall nearby. We almost never need to go there, but since we were pretty sure a lockdown was coming it seemed wise to go stock up on stuff we couldn't get at our local grocery.
There's a famous freak-out expats have when they return to the US and go to a grocery store. It may be in the toothpaste aisle, or the peanut butter aisle, or the breakfast cereal aisle, but wherever it is you will feel overwhelmed with the number of choices and just sort of stand there muttering "man... Americans really love breakfast cereal..." The existence of Auchan makes me pretty confident I'll avoid that on my next repatriation: it's huge and has more varieties of most foods than an American big box does, including duck breast.
Duck breast is much more popular in France than the US, and that's a shame. Yes, it's a finicky meat to cook; yes, it tastes a little gamey. But seriously: it's really good.
This is a very easy meal, when you get right down to it:
Score the duck breast's fat, and pour on a lot of salt, pepper, and thyme. Then cook on a skillet over medium heat, fat side down, until most of the fat is rendered. Then turn the breast over and cook the meat side in the rendered fat until it reaches about 150F.
The fries are just fries (though you can use the duck fat from cooking the breasts for extra points). The gravy was really easy: deglaze the duck pan with cider vinegar, make a roux in the pan with some flour, and add a little mustard, raspberry jam, and chicken stock. Simmer and stir until thickened.