A lot of people tend to shy away from cooking duck, thinking it’s difficult. If you’ve ever roasted a chicken, you can make a duck. Simple, unctuous and flavorful, it’s a great dish to share with friends.
Large duck – 4-5 lbs
Salt & pepper
3 tablespoons sugar
1/4 rice vinegar
1/2 cup beef stock
2 Cara Cara oranges
1 tablespoon arrowroot
6 tablespoons soy sauce
6 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons room temperature butter
Veggies of your choosing
Remove any innards from the duck. Rinse and pat dry.
Use a sharp knife point to cut the skin of the fat on the duck, taking care not to go into the meat. This helps the fat render out of the bird.
Salt the duck well and preheat the oven to 325°F. You can stuff some garlic or oranges inside the duck if you like, but either way, you should close the opening with a turkey lacer or skewer.
Put the duck in a roasting pan with a grate. Smear the butter over the duck, and season with salt and pepper. If you want, surround the duck with some vegetables. Salt and pepper them as well. I used baby carrots, garlic cloves and scallions, but potatoes and onions or even radishes would be great. The fat that drips from the duck helps roast the veggies beautifully. You can also simply serve the duck over some polenta, mashed potatoes or rice, since the sauce would be great with any of those as well. If you do that, add some of the pan juices to your sauce (not too much, it’s mainly rendered fat).
Roast for 90 minutes.
Grate the peel off the oranges,and juice them. Meanwhile, boil the vinegar and sugar in a small pot until it turns brown. Pour in the stock little by little, stirring all the while. Add the orange juice, soy and honey. Set aside.
Take the pan out and increase the heat to 425°F. Brush a little of the orange mixture on the duck, then put it back in the oven and roast until the skin is crispy, about 15 to 20 minutes. Watch it carefully, because the sugar will burn quickly.
Bring the sauce to a simmer, then add half of the peel and all of the arrowroot. Simmer 5 minutes until it thickens a bit.. To serve, carve the duck and arrange it on plates with your veggies. Top with a little of the sauce and some of the zest.
Pick up a bottle of Trimbach Gewurtztraminer (or two), and invite some friends to a delicious ducky dinner.