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Anything is good, in moderation. I cook because I love to and because I can share with those around me. I crochet for the same reason.

Do what you want to do, enjoy what you do and use it to touch those around you.

Aug 15, 2012

Cooking Duck

If you ask Hubby, his favorite way for me to make duck is to order it off of a menu.  While he likes duck, he would most often prefer something else.  I am okay with that, but I also appreciate that he will eat it when I make it.  If I am totally honest, I also have to say that I like having the extra leftovers so I have lunch for several days and don't have to share :)

Duck is a high fat poultry, so it is handled a little differently from chicken.

Option 1:  Duck Breast Only
If you have been marinading your duck for the last day or so after my Monday post, I though I should start with how to cook duck breast.  First - score the skin and fat with cuts about one inch apart.  Start with a cold pan and put the duck breast in the pan SKIN SIDE DOWN.  Most of the cooking will occur with the skin down - this will render the fat and help keep your meat moist as it will have limited contact with the pan.  This also allows your skin to crisp.  When your duck is almost done, remove it from the pan, remove most of the grease from the pan, and return the duck to the pan skin side up turn it for the last 5 - 10 minutes.  I highly recommend a deep pan and/or a splatter guard.  Temperature - chefs will tell you to cook duck to medium rare to rare.  I am sorry, but I just cannot do that.  I prefer mine medium - about 130 degrees.

If you prefer, you can render the fat then finish the duck in a 375 - 400 degree oven until the desired temperature.  Allow to sit for 5 - 10 minutes before serving.

Option 2:  Whole Duck
Roasted duck is wonderful.  Because it is a higher fat content, I do not recommend stuffing.  That does not mean that you cannot put flavor enhancers in the cavities in the duck.  Using the blueberry chambord sauce?  Then put strawberries and raspberries with a little rosemary in the cavity.  I at least recommend salt and pepper. 

Slow Roasting -
Heat oven to 275 degrees.  Poke the duck all over with a sharp skewer breast side down in a pan.  Roast for 1 hour.  Remove, poke, put in pan breast side up, roast for 1 hour.  Cook to desired doneness (130 for medium).  This can take 4 hours or more, so I recommend removing the rendered duck fat at the 2 and or 3 hour mark.  Remove and let rest 10 minutes before carving.

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