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Thread: Duck

  1. #1
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    Duck

    Duck is a favorite dish in my home and when we go out. I have tried many recipes and methods of preparing wild duck. None have been anything to write about. I've found some restuarants that do well in presenting a duck meal, but I do not know:
    • what kind of duck

    • how prepared

    • heat used

    • time heated


    Anyone who has a tried and true recipe for duck please reply.

  2. #2
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    Not really enough information here to respond. I like and eat a lot of duck. What kind of recipe are you looking for? Oriental? S American? European? Or is somethign from the ME more to your liking? If you could give some kind of example of what kind of duck dishes you have enjoyed in the past I wouldbe happy to pass on some recipes that have worked well for me in the past.

    As far as duck selection...there is only one. The muscovy. Often when people like duch from a restaurant but can not make a duck worth spitting on at home it is because they are using the wrong kind of duck. Generally the ducks you find in grocery stores are peking or mules (a mule is a peking crossed with something else). Pekings re prolific producers and grow quickly, so they are easy and cheap to raise. They are also difficult to prepare and trend toward greasy and, if imporperly prepared, have an objectionable flavor.

    Most restaurants, especially the better ones, use muscovies. They are not greasy (in fact the breast is something like 97% fat free). The muscovy has also dominated the European markets. The problem with muscovies is that they tend to be pretty expensive in the US. There used to be an organic food store that sold them in my town. They ran about $30 each. You can also buy them online at http://www.grimaud.com/duck.htm

    Personally, I like muscovies enough that I raise a flock of them. The kids love them, they are worth their weight in gold when it comes to bug control, and they are delicious to boot.

    Typically whole duck is cooked initially at a high temperature (450-475) to seal the skin. That is also what give them the crackly skin that is so prized. After about 15 minutes you turn the heat down to around 350 to finish cooking it. Duck should always be cooked medium or medium rare and if you are roasting it, it helps to brush the skin with a quality oil. Most people use olive oil. Peanut oil will work fairly well as does sesame oil, but for some reason vegetable, canola, or corn oil does not work well.

    If you can give me a better idea of what kind of recipes you want I can pass some on.
    If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen. —Samuel Adams

  3. #3
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    Thank you for responding. You appear to be a connoisseur of duck. Do you know wines as well?


    Quote Originally Posted by daewoo View Post
    Not really enough information here to respond.
    Yet you managed nearly a page.
    I like and eat a lot of duck. What kind of recipe are you looking for?
    Tried and true...as I said.
    Oriental? S American? European? Or is somethign from the ME more to your liking? If you could give some kind of example of what kind of duck dishes you have enjoyed in the past I wouldbe happy to pass on some recipes that have worked well for me in the past.
    I have experimented with recipes of my own using various spices, fruits and vegetables. I care not about the ethnic origin of the recipe, just the deliciousness of the duck meat and its compatibility with the side dishes, be it spicy, mild, sour or sweet. Some of my best tasters are wickedly spicy. One of my best is suitable for dessert...with flaming presentation involving 151 rum and real ice cream.


    As far as duck selection...there is only one. The muscovy. Often when people like duch from a restaurant but can not make a duck worth spitting on at home it is because they are using the wrong kind of duck. Generally the ducks you find in grocery stores are peking or mules (a mule is a peking crossed with something else). Pekings re prolific producers and grow quickly, so they are easy and cheap to raise. They are also difficult to prepare and trend toward greasy and, if imporperly prepared, have an objectionable flavor.

    Most restaurants, especially the better ones, use muscovies. They are not greasy (in fact the breast is something like 97% fat free). The muscovy has also dominated the European markets. The problem with muscovies is that they tend to be pretty expensive in the US. There used to be an organic food store that sold them in my town. They ran about $30 each. You can also buy them online at http://www.grimaud.com/duck.htm

    Personally, I like muscovies enough that I raise a flock of them. The kids love them, they are worth their weight in gold when it comes to bug control, and they are delicious to boot.
    I use Muscovy ducks often. I have Muscovy Wild Duck on occasion. I have used Peking with near success. There is a restuarant we frequent that prepares what they call Peking Duck to praise, though they may be using Muscovy to do it. This same restuarant also offers a $55 duck meal that must be ordered a day ahead of time. What could they be doing other than marinating?

    I am interested more in learning to tame the wild taste in the meat of a wild (hunted and killed in the wild) duck than in the preparation of something akin to a farm-raised, store-bought butterball turkey.


    Typically whole duck is cooked initially at a high temperature (450-475) to seal the skin. That is also what give them the crackly skin that is so prized. After about 15 minutes you turn the heat down to around 350 to finish cooking it. Duck should always be cooked medium or medium rare and if you are roasting it, it helps to brush the skin with a quality oil. Most people use olive oil. Peanut oil will work fairly well as does sesame oil, but for some reason vegetable, canola, or corn oil does not work well.
    Ah yes...evoo...the readily available kitchen elixir.

    Have you tried slow-smoking?...with apple wood?

    If you can give me a better idea of what kind of recipes you want I can pass some on.
    Tried and true.

    Tried as in you have prepared it this way before and it turned out well.

    True in that you have tried it multiple times and it came out well each time, thus proving that your initial success was not an accident.
    Last edited by isly ilwott; 02-16-2008 at 01:48 PM.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by isly ilwott View Post
    Thank you for responding. You appear to be a connoisseur of duck. Do you know wines as well?
    I do not keep much of a wine cellar. Generally less than 100 bottles...jsut enough to entertain. I can generally order a bottle without embaressing myself, though, so if you have a question I can tryt o answer it.

    Yet you managed nearly a page.
    LOL. Talk to me about food/cooking, be prepared for a long conversation

    Tried and true...as I said. I have experimented with recipes of my own using various spices, fruits and vegetables. I care not about the ethnic origin of the recipe, just the deliciousness of the duck meat and its compatibility with the side dishes, be it spicy, mild, sour or sweet. Some of my best tasters are wickedly spicy. One of my best is suitable for dessert...with flaming presentation involving 151 rum and real ice cream.
    Hmmm. Well, my favorite "never fail" is just plain old fashioned roast duck. 1 muscovy, brush with EVOO. 2 carrots, 2 sliced onions, 1 cup of chicken stock, splash of white white (hlaf cup or so). Salt and pepper run (inside and out). 475 for 15 minutes in the oven then turn it down to 350 and cook for about another 45 minutes. Meat should be medium rare (breast).

    My wife likes this one, which she pulled off the internet somewhere:

    3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
    1 1/2 cups minced shallots (about 8 large)
    6 garlic cloves, minced
    1 1/4 cups dry white wine, divided
    3/4 cup dry red wine
    2 14-ounce cans low-salt chicken broth
    1 14-ounce can low-salt beef broth
    3/4 cup fresh orange juice
    2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses*
    3 teaspoons minced fresh marjoram, divided
    1 fresh bay leaf
    4 pounds boneless Muscovy duck breasts (4 to 8 breast halves, depending on size)

    1 1/2 tablespoons all purpose flour

    Heat 2 tablespoons oil in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots; sauté until golden brown, about 18 minutes. Add garlic; sauté 3 minutes. Add 1 cup white wine and 3/4 cup red wine. Boil until most of liquid evaporates, about 10 minutes. Add both broths, orange juice, pomegranate molasses, 1 teaspoon marjoram, and bay leaf; boil until mixture is reduced to 2 cups, about 20 minutes. Discard bay leaf. (Sauce can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and chill.)
    Set rack at lowest position in oven; preheat to 450°F. Rub meat side of duck breasts with 1 tablespoon olive oil and 2 teaspoons marjoram. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Working in batches, sear breasts, skin side down, in heavy large skillet over high heat until skin browns and fat is rendered, about 8 minutes.

    Transfer duck breasts, skin side down, to rimmed baking sheet. Drain all but 1 1/2 tablespoons fat from skillet; reserve skillet. Roast duck until thermometer inserted into thickest part registers 145°F for medium-rare, about 20 minutes.

    Meanwhile, bring sauce to simmer. Rewarm duck fat in reserved skillet over medium heat. Add flour; stir 1 minute. Gradually whisk in sauce.

    Transfer duck breasts to cutting board. Pour off all fat from baking sheet. Add 1/4 cup white wine to sheet and scrape up browned bits; add to sauce. Simmer sauce 3 minutes to blend flavors. Season with salt and pepper. Thinly slice duck breasts and divide among 8 plates. Drizzle with sauce


    I actually liek it as well. A lot of duck recipes end up with kind of a heavy dish. This is surprisingly light.

    I use Muscovy ducks often. I have Muscovy Wild Duck on occasion. I have used Peking with near success. There is a restuarant we frequent that prepares what they call Peking Duck to praise, though they may be using Muscovy to do it. This same restuarant also offers a $55 duck meal that must be ordered a day ahead of time. What could they be doing other than marinating?
    Tough to say. Do you know what the recipe is called? Some resipes require a confit type preparatrion for the entire duck (render it in fat then let sit overnight).

    I certainly cannot speak for all restaurants, but all of them around here use the muscovy regardless of the dish. "Peking duck" on a menu refers to a preparation technique usually as opposed to a promise of what kind of duck you are getting.

    I am interested more in learning to tame the wild taste in the meat of a wild (hunted and killed in the wild) duck than in the preparation of something akin to a farm-raised, store-bought butterball turkey.
    That one is more difficult. I referenced "heavy" recipes above. You see a lot of "heavy" recipes for duck out there because most wild ducks do not taste good. The heavy sauces are designed to cover the taste of the duck. I have never had a wild duck that was worth eating.

    Have you tried slow-smoking?...with apple wood?
    Yes and no. Smoked, yes. Many times. I usually have a smoked duck in the refrigerator because sliced smoked muscovy makes an AWESOME sandwich (sliced smoked duck, gruyere, some kind of light mustard, all on a baguette or some kind of heavy roll, heat it...mm mm good).

    You don't want to smoke a duck all day like you would a piece of beef or pork. Prep it like you are going to roast it (475 for 15 minutes w/ olive oil) and then put it in the smoker under medium smoky head (200) for about 1.5-2 hours. Good stuff.
    If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen. —Samuel Adams

  5. #5
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    The biggest rule for duck in season is that, whatever recipe you use, degrease them FIRST! Ducks in season are very fat. To do this take a grilling fork and stab the dressed duck deeply all over and put in a hot (450 degrees) oven for 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven, pour off grease. This does a lot to get rid of the gamey taste. THEN proceed to cook according to whatever recipe you like. I like to stuff them with berries and sauerkraut (discard before serving) and cook them in a slow oven (325) for 25 minutes per pound, basting often with chambord.
    For wild duck, make sure you don't just rip the feathers out and cook them immediately. It's just like any other wild game, you have to hang it first. Ducks, pheasant,,grouse around 5-7 days is good. Turkeys and large geese a bit longer. That's where the gamey taste is banished and the tenderness is increased.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by isly ilwott View Post
    Duck is a favorite dish in my home and when we go out. I have tried many recipes and methods of preparing wild duck. None have been anything to write about. I've found some restuarants that do well in presenting a duck meal, but I do not know:
    • what kind of duck

    • how prepared

    • heat used

    • time heated


    Anyone who has a tried and true recipe for duck please reply.
    Back when I hunted, I cooked ducks just about every way I could think to. Baked, broiled, grilled, deep fried, wok fried, boiled, pressure cooker, crock pot, smoked, held over an open fire on a skewer (like cavemen might have done), smothered in banana leaves, stuffed into a goose etc.

    The last season I hunted, I killed over 300 ducks. I had most of them cleaned on halves (the cleaner kept half of them) so I had about 150 frozen ducks at one time.

    The game taste was a problem until years ago I discovered brining and cow's milk soakings. Depending on the species of duck (some are great tasting with little effort, some require more effort, some aren't worth killin') and whether you recieved it freshly killed or frozen, different methods are needed. If you're given a duck, always ask what kind it is. Teal don't need much treatment, mergansers are almost best refused, or more politely dropped in the garbage after the giver leaves...you can always lie later about how good it was. It's what the ducks eat that changes their taste.

    When and where they are killed also affects the fat content. Early in the migration, there will be more fat. Farther south and later in the season, they will have lost a lot of fat. That may contribute to the ability of Louisianna chefs to prepare such good duck feasts.

    It's best to soak the breasts in milk soon after the killin' is over. Some of the best duck meals I've ever cooked were prepared and cooked at the camp on the day of the bird's death.

    Cooking time is critical when using high heat. Duck (other than smoked) should be served medium rare to rare. It is not like chicken. It will sometimes taste more like steak than you might think a bird should. If you overcook it, it will do about the same as overcooked pork...dry up and lose taste.

    Thin slivers of breast meat will cook very quickly in a hot wok.

    Brining has long been practiced by duck cookers. I don't know when it was discovered that kosher salt works better, but it's best not to use iodized salt.

    I normally cook the breasts separate from the rest of the duck except when smoking them. I like to brine them before soaking in milk. If I'm going to freeze them, I use the brine and milk bath first and another milk bath when they're thawed out.

    I could be wrong but I think the milk does more to remove the gamey taste than the salt water.

    I've used salt and apple juice also. (When you don't have any milk available, try apple juice and kosher salt.)

    If I can locate my old notebook, I'll post my orange-marmelade and rosemary recipe...Alexandre Marnier-Lapostolle would be proud.

    Jim


    P.S.
    I'm glad to see more interest in cooking here on 4forums.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by flygirl View Post
    The biggest rule for duck in season is that, whatever recipe you use, degrease them FIRST! Ducks in season are very fat. To do this take a grilling fork and stab the dressed duck deeply all over and put in a hot (450 degrees) oven for 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven, pour off grease. This does a lot to get rid of the gamey taste. THEN proceed to cook according to whatever recipe you like. I like to stuff them with berries and sauerkraut (discard before serving) and cook them in a slow oven (325) for 25 minutes per pound, basting often with chambord.
    For wild duck, make sure you don't just rip the feathers out and cook them immediately. It's just like any other wild game, you have to hang it first. Ducks, pheasant,,grouse around 5-7 days is good. Turkeys and large geese a bit longer. That's where the gamey taste is banished and the tenderness is increased.
    You are correct in that de-greasing and de-blooding are important in removing the game taste. A kosher salt brine takes care of the blood. Milk does it even better, I think.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by flygirl View Post
    The biggest rule for duck in season is that, whatever recipe you use, degrease them FIRST! Ducks in season are very fat. To do this take a grilling fork and stab the dressed duck deeply all over and put in a hot (450 degrees) oven for 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven, pour off grease. This does a lot to get rid of the gamey taste. THEN proceed to cook according to whatever recipe you like. I like to stuff them with berries and sauerkraut (discard before serving) and cook them in a slow oven (325) for 25 minutes per pound, basting often with chambord.
    For wild duck, make sure you don't just rip the feathers out and cook them immediately. It's just like any other wild game, you have to hang it first. Ducks, pheasant,,grouse around 5-7 days is good. Turkeys and large geese a bit longer. That's where the gamey taste is banished and the tenderness is increased.
    Excellent! I never understood exactly why the 15 minutes at 450-475 was important, just that you needed to do it and I know that it is impossible to get the skin crackly if you dont.

    I've used salt and apple juice also. (When you don't have any milk available, try apple juice and kosher salt.)
    Cooking antelope with apples or apple juice will remove the gamey flavor from it as well.
    If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you; May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen. —Samuel Adams

  9. #9
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    I saw a decent preparation of a Muscovy on a re-run of Julia Child the other day. (The lady lacked only two days of becoming 92 years old when she died in 2004....I still miss her charm and excellent cooking tips. I appreciate the re-runs.)

    She had a guest chef from France that prepared a Muscovy after showing the basic differences between wild duck, Pekin duck, some goose-looking, huge French duck and the champion Muscovy. They had all been cleaned and plucked naked so they looked alike except for size (and the darker color of the wild duck) and the obviously thicker layer of white fatty skin on the French duck.

    His boning skills were excellent and he did something I've not tried yet. After boning the duck and sending all but the breasts to a stock pot, he scored the skin side in a square grid of slits that went only half way through the skin and were spaced about a quarter inch apart in both directions. He mentioned that it takes a very sharp knife and a gentle touch to keep from cutting through the skin. He said that the scoring enables the skin to release its oil more quickly, thereby allowing a much shorter cooking time and adding more duck-fat flavor. The breasts were then cooked in a hot non-stick skillet with a small amount of evoo, starting with the skin side down (for about 4 minutes) then the meat side for another 4 minutes.

    He let them "rest" for about 20 minutes, then sliced thinly on a bias (about 45degrees). The meat looked more like medium rare steak than duck meat.

    The only seasoning used on the breasts was a bit of Kosher salt before cooking. The accompanying veggie recipes were of Chinese origin and had many spices, however they were just layed around the duck and drizzled with some of the duck stock after the plate was set. There was hardly any seasoning of the meat.

    I did not record the recipe...just remembered the technique. I will get out my favorite pan-fried-duck recipe and try it this weekend, I think.

  10. #10
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    I have no idea.

  11. #11
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    Hey

    I have recently started to learn cooking... lets hope i will a pro chef one day... :D

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