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Dec 23, 2009 06:17 PM

First Time Cooking a Duck

Surprisingly, I've never roasted a duck before. My memories of cooking duck surround the day my mom tried to make one and nearly set the house on fire.

/me cringes

I'm a much better cook than my mom was, particularly in technique so I'm not so worried about setting the oven to flames, however, I could use any cooking tips anyone might care to share.

Recipes, appreciated as well although I think I'll stick with the classic Duck L'orange since I have all the ingredients at hand, and am loathe to head back into the supermarket again after todays visit. Simple, nothing elaborate. It's a duck sized for 2 - just your average Long Island type, I think it's about 6 pounds or so.

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  1. Lot's of fat in duck, so be prepared for a lot of drippings.
    I used to go to a restaurant for duck L'orange and told the waiter I wanted a freshly made duck and he told me I wouldn't want it be cause there's to much fat that has to be rendered down and why they serve the day old duck L'orange.

    1. I was planning on goose, but the Whole Foods here in MSP didn't carry it, so we went for the duck. We're going to follow the very basic roast duck recipe in Lidia Bastianich's Cooking from the Heart of Italy.

      It calls for pulling off as much fat as you can ahead of time, salting the cavity and tossing in some rosemary sprigs, trussing it and pouring a combination of wine, olive oil and lemon juice over the skin.

      True, this is probably too late for you. It was hard to find rosemary at this late date in MSP.

      1 Reply
      1. re: miki

        Nope. I have fresh rosemary in the house, lemons, olive oil and wine :) That sounds yummy. Might try.

      2. Here's a link for Mark Bittman's Steamed and Roasted duck. I offer it more for technique rather than the ingredients, which include soy and ginger, but the steaming makes for a less fatty and tender duck. I recommend this style of preparing duck, regardless of what seasoning or sauce you use:

        1 Reply
        1. re: bushwickgirl

          Agree 1000% with you bushwickgirl, steaming first is the best way to go about it. I've also cooked them for a long time (5 hours or more) at 225 deg F and had good results, although not as good as when steamed first (not as much fat renders). I just wish I had a receptacle big enough to steam tomorrow's goose before roasting it!