Festive Roast Duck L'orange Recipe
Waterfowl make a wonderful change from chicken, and little can compare with a juicy duck recipe. Most ducks eaten in the U.S. are White Pekin, sometimes called Long Island duck. Other popular ducks include the Mallard, Muscovy and Moulard. Unlike chickens and turkeys, duck is only dark meat. Duck is a good protein source and contains phosphorus, niacin, iron, riboflavin, zinc, thiamine and vitamin B-6. However, duck meat is fairly high in cholesterol and fat, particularly in the skin.
The White Pekin was domesticated more than 2,000 years ago in China. The American Pekin was bred from the Chinese Mallard, a small duck with black feathers. Almost 95 percent of the domestic duck consumed in the U.S. is Pekin.
Pekin duck is mildly flavored and good to use in most recipes. Muscovy ducks are more strongly flavored and good for stews and roasts. The Mallard is more gamey but leaner and lends well to smoking, and the Moulard, which is a cross between the Pekin and Muscovy, is excellent when grilled or prepared as a sauté. To make the most of duck, you can use the breasts for a roast, the legs for stews and rich additions to salads, and make a fabulous soup stock from the bones and wings.
Succulent Roast Duck L'orange Recipe
Serves: 4 to 5
1 duck labeled Pekin or Long Island
Salt and black pepper
2 large bay leaves
4 or 5 sprigs fresh rosemary
4 or 5 sprigs fresh thyme
5 large cloves of garlic
1 medium yellow onion, sliced or quartered
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup butter
16 oz. chicken stock
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
5 Mandarin oranges, sectioned and peeled
1/2 cup water
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine pepper and salt, and rub the duck inside and out. Peel the garlic and smash the cloves. Place the herbs, sliced onion and garlic inside the duck cavity. Place the duck in an ample roasting pan and bake for around 1 hour or until almost cooked. Afterward, remove the pan from the oven and place the duck on a platter.
Discard all of the liquid in the bottom of the pan except for about 3 Tbsp. Add the wine and chicken stock to the pan, place the duck back in the roasting pan and return to the oven for another 30 minutes, basting once or twice, until browned and crispy on the outside.
Combine oranges, sugar, vinegar and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil on the stove. Once boiling, reduce the heat to medium-low and continue cooking until the sauce is somewhat thick and the oranges have broken down. This takes about 45 minutes. Serve by slicing the duck in thin slices and spooning the fruit and wine sauce over the meat.