butterfly (spatchcock) a duck
Has anyone ever prepared a duck by butterflying the whole thing? I've done it with chicken and read about doing it for turkey. Now I have a duck to make tomorrow and thought it might be a fun way to prepare it.
any thoughts/ recipes/ suggestions?
you'd normally spatchcock small game birds to get them flat so they cook evenly. given ducks are larger and its breast will cook faster than its thighs and legs, this might not be the best way to handle that bird. tradition is established because a method really, really works and the french tradition of confit duck legs and pan roasted duck breast is hard to beat. ofcourse peking style is probably superior but much too difficult to do at home so stick with the french tradition and you'll worry less.
I've never actually spatchcocked a duck. I've done chickens this way many times. I do know that down south they bone-out a duck as the middle part of a turducken (boned-out chicken inside a duck inside a turkey). I've never made a turducken, but not because of the boning out part, but because They take about 8 hours to cook all the way through.
At my house we eat a roast duck every other week, more or less. I buy a duck from the Chinese poultry shop the day before I intend to cook it. I remove the head, neck, feet, and wing tips, saving them for stock; then I rub the duck with a mix of salt and roasted Sichuan pepper, maybe 2 teaspoons. The duck sits overnight in the fridge, loosely covered with wax paper. I roast it for four hours in a 250 degree oven. There's no smoke and no splatter. I do end up with lovely duck fat, which is wonderful for frying potatoes, etc. One duck serves three moderate eaters.