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Dec 15, 2003 06:37 PM

Duck in Dallas

  • m

First, thanks to all you chowhounds who responded to my recent post inquiring about dry-aged beef in Dallas. Very helpful.

My question now is: where can one buy fresh duck in Big D? I've tried both Central Market and Simon David (which used to carry it) to no avail. Any suggestions would be appreciated greatly. I thank you in advance for your responses.

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  1. The Whole Foods website has a recipe for Crispy Duck, using a Muscovy duck. You may want to call them to find if they have fresh duck.

    6 Replies
    1. re: Kirk

      I've only seen frozen duck at the Whole Foods Markets I've been to.


      1. re: Scott

        Well, then, maybe an early morning trip to White Rock Lake is the solution ... : }

        1. re: Kirk

          A trip to White Rock Lake today should yield Lesser Scaup, Bufflehead, Ruddy Duck, Northern Shoveler, and the perennial pseudo-domesticated Mallard and Muscovy mixes. If you *must* poach a city park, go for a pseudo-domesticated Muscovy. It'll taste a lot better than the wild ducks on the lake (unless you like oily, fishy tasting fowl).

          Happy hunting!


          1. re: Scott

            I am impressed with your knowledge of the White Rock avians. Let's not forget the pelicans!

            1. re: Kirk

              Ask Scott about his intimate knowledge of their slippery slopes.

              1. re: Nick

                I don't know if this will help much but, randomly enough, the Brookshires Grocery Store in Mt. Vernon, TX carries fresh goose and duck. There may be one closer to Dallas. Also, I'm sure that you could find fresh duck at Kuby's in Snyder Plaza but it won't be cheap. Good luck!

    2. Is there a reason you're looking for fresh rather than frozen? In my experience, Whole Foods only carries frozen duck. They might have some unthawed, but it was previously frozen. I don't know that there's near the problem with previously frozen poultry that there is with previously frozen fish.

      Kroger owns some Winn-Dixies down there, doesn't it? Up here, the supermarkets that Kroger owns sell a variety of Pekin/Long Island that's frozen. It's decent stuff. I prefer Muscovey myself, but it runs about twice and much per pound and I wouldn't say it's twice as good.

      I always thaw duck out in the frig over time, cut off the wings and thigh/leg pieces and then take off the breasts and throw the carcass in the freezer for stock. Duck stock is so much more flavorful than chicken stock. Then I broil the breasts (8 inches for 5 minutes a side starting skin side up -- make sure you score the skin --, then about 4 inches for another couple minutes to make the skin really crispy. Serve it medium to medium rare. Then use the legs/thighs and wings in either a braise, such as a yummy curry, or for confit. Confit in lard/shortening if you can't find duck fat or it's way expensive. After confit-ing, I like to remove the skin and crisp it up in the oven for crackling. Use it like you would bacon, almost. I made Toast with brie and duck crackling the other day that was quite tasty.

      Anyway, check your freezer section of your local supermarkets for frozen duck first. We get it for about $2/lb up here.

      1. I'll bet you can locate fresh duck through the Vietnamese / Chinese community. They will have a source, for sure. Try their restaurants and/or grocery stores.

        1. Thanks to all for your informative - and humerous - replies.

          1. I was in the Plano Whole Foods (on Preston at Park) this evening, and they have fresh duckling -- about 4 to 5 pounds, I imagine -- in the fresh meats case. The label says it is was fed organically grown grains, it did not receive antibiotics, and that the duck's bill was not clipped.

            So there you go, Mister F. Fresh duck(ling), and as politically correct as food can be, too!

            2 Replies
            1. re: Kirk

              Now it would be interesting to do a blind side-by-side taste testing between the fresh duck and a frozen one with identical preparation. Is fresh worth it?


              1. re: Scott

                I am by no means a duck expert. I do like Chinese dishes including duck: barbecue duck, smoked tea duck, crispy duck. And confit is certainly worth writing home about when it is done right. I suspect that frozen/thawed duck would be perfectly acceptable for those dishes.

                My only real "fresh vs. frozen" points of comparison are chicken and turkey, both of which seem to taste better when they have not been frozen. However, that is a comparison based on roasted preparations, and I am willing to admit that even those comparisons are distinctions without much of a difference.