Roasted Duck

As promised in last week’s post, here is the recipe for the roasted duck. I pretty much use this recipe whenever I make duck but with a few variations to the spices. To be clear, this is not a Peking duck recipe. It’s a simple roast duck recipe that I think is great for special occasions and holidays.

Roasted Duck with Roasted Potatoes and Sauteed Vegetables

1 4-6 lb duck
1 1/2 cups (12oz bottle) Black Toad Dark Ale (or dark beer or cola)
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp sushi seasoning (or rice wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar)
1 tbsp hoisin sauce
1/2 tbsp chili garlic sauce
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp crushed dried oregano
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp ginger powder (or one roughly chopped medium or large piece of fresh ginger)
salt and pepper to taste

The Sauce
Add beer to a small saucepan and allow the foam to dissolve. Add all of the other ingredients except for the salt and pepper to the beer. Whisk the ingredients together until they are reasonably blended. Don’t worry if all of the spices don’t dissolve at this point, as long as there are no large clumps everything should dissolve once heated.

Cook the sauce over medium heat and whisk occasionally until it comes to a boil. Lower the heat and allow the sauce to simmer. Taste the sauce and add salt, black pepper, and any other seasonings if needed. If the bitter taste from the beer is too strong, add a bit more sugar and/or sushi seasoning and allow to continue simmering. Remove from the heat when the flavor of the sauce is to your liking and its thickened a bit.

Tips: Start out with less sugar (about a 1/2 cup) if you substitute the beer with soda or the sauce might end up being a bit too sweet. The sauce can be prepared a few days in advance.

The Duck
If the duck is frozen, defrost it in the fridge. Remove the duck from the package and be sure to remove the bag of innards from inside the duck. Trim any excess skin and fat from around the duck’s neck and cavity opening. Take care to also remove any large or visible feathers.

Place the duck in a large bowl and pour over about 1/3 to 1/2 cup of white vinegar; rinse the outside and cavity of of the duck with the vinegar. Allow to sit in the vinegar for about five minutes and then pour off and rinse away the vinegar with cool tap water. This helps to firm up the skin and gets rid of that raw meat smell.

Place the duck back into the bowl and cover with the sauce. Be sure that both the interior and exterior of the duck are covered with the sauce. Cover the bowl with its cover or plastic wrap and place in a cold but not freezing part of the fridge. You can refrigerate the duck for 4 to 24 hours. Rotate the duck every few hours to ensure that the breast and back get equal time in the sauce.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place a roasting rack in a baking pan or a cooling rack on a reasonably deep jelly roll pan. Do not use a cookie sheet or overly shallow pan because as the duck cooks, the fat can make a really big mess if it overflows. Remove the duck from the fridge and drain off any excess sauce. Place the duck on the rack in the baking pan cover with foil and place in the oven.

Pour the sauce into a small saucepan and bring to a boil; this should kill off any bacteria and allow you to use the sauce for basting. Roast the duck for about 1 1/2 hours to 2 hours, basting about every 1/2 hour. Remove the cover/foil when the duck has about 20-30 minutes left to allow the duck to brown. The duck is done when the juices run clear and/or a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 165 degrees.

Approximately 4 servings



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