"Recipes are meant to be shared"...Ann Thibeault

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Everything is just Ducky

If you like duck, I have a number of Tried and True recipes to share.

First up is the Barefoot Contessa's recipe for Roast Duck. Duck doesn't get much better than this. Perfect crispy skin. Melt in the mouth tender.

Home Cookin Chapter: Recipes From Thibeault's Table

Roast Duck
Roast Duck
Source: Ina Garten The Barefoot Contessa

2 (5 to 5 1/2 pounds each) ducks, innards and wing tips removed
6 quarts chicken broth
Kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Unwrap the ducks and allow them to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes. With a fork, prick the skin without piercing the meat. This will allow the fat to drain off while the ducks cook.

Meanwhile, in a very large stock pot which can hold the 2 ducks, heat the chicken broth with 1 tablespoon of kosher salt until it boils. Add the ducks very carefully and bring the stock back to a boil. If there isn't enough stock to cover the ducks, add the hottest tap water to cover. If the ducks float to the top, place a plate on top to keep them immersed. When the stock comes back to a boil, lower the heat and simmer the ducks in the stock for 45 minutes.

When the ducks are finished simmering, skim off enough duck fat from the top of the stock to pour a film on the bottom of a 14 by 18 by 3-inch roasting pan. This will keep the ducks from sticking when they roast. Carefully take the ducks out of the stock, holding them over the pot to drain. Place them in the roasting pan, pat the skin dry with paper towels, and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of salt and the pepper. If you have time, allow the ducks to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to allow the skin to dry.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. (Be sure your oven is very clean or it will smoke!) Roast the ducks for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow them to rest, covered with aluminum foil, for 20 minutes. Serve warm.


Optional Orange sauce.
Not original to this recipe
source: Retro recipes.
Simmer red wine, chicken or duck broth, fresh orange juice, honey and
orange slices until reduced. Serve on the side or drizzled over
roasted duck.

Home Cookin Chapter: Recipes From Thibeault's Table

Duck with Orange
Adjusted from: The Wimodausis Club Cookbook: Third Edition 1934 (This is a really interesting old cookbook that I picked up as a used Cookbook)

1 duck, about 5 pounds
2 teaspoons sugar
1 cup of white wine
5 oranges
1 tablespoon butter
2 1/2 cups rich chicken stock
1 lemon
1 ounce of Orange Liqueur

Melt one tablespoon of butter in a well heated frying pan. Brown the
duck well over all and then remove from the pan.

Remove most of the fat.

Add the sugar and cook until it becomes thick caramel. Add one cup of
wine and simmer until reduce by half. Add two cups of broth and cook
another 15 minutes. Place the duck into the casserole and add the juice
of two oranges, pepper, salt and two slices of orange with the rind on
it. Cook in a 325°F oven until tender (1 1/2 to 2 hours).

Cut the rind off two oranges and one lemon and cut into very fine long
strips, cook in boiling water for five minutes and drain.

Half hour before serving, add the cooked rinds, uncover casserole and
continue cooking. About ten minutes before serving add the orange

Home Cookin Chapter: Recipes From Thibeault's Table

Duck Breast- Sautéed
source: www.florida-agriculture.com

Sautéed Duck Breast
with Red Wine, Pears and Peppercorn Sauce

4 duck breast
2 cups red wine
2 tsp. black peppercorns (cracked)
2 tsp. shallots (minced)
1 bay leaf
2 cups duck or chicken stock
2 cups fresh pears (peeled, seeded, and medium diced)
As needed cornstarch and water

Dry the duck breast of any moisture and score the skin with a knife.
Season with salt and pepper and sear the duck breasts in a medium-hot
pan to render the fat (skin side down). Once a golden brown color is
achieved, turn the duck breasts over and lightly brown the flesh side.
Remove from the pan and finish in a 350 degree oven until desired
doneness. Remove the grease from the pan and add peppercorns, shallots,
and bay leaf; add red wine, stir and reduce liquid by half. Add stock
and simmer for 20 minutes; add diced pears and simmer for 5 minutes.
Thicken sauce with cornstarch and water mixture. Spoon sauce over
finished duck breasts.

Home Cookin Chapter: Recipes From Thibeault's Table

Duck Breast With Figs And Port
Adapted from a Bon Appetit Recipes

2 large duck breast halves, boned
(bones reserved)
1 minced garlic clove
Olive oil
1/2 teaspoon minced fresh thyme or dried, crumbled
Freshly ground pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 3/4 pounds chicken backs or wings
1 onion, quartered
1 cup beef stock or canned unsalted broth
1 cup chicken stock or canned low-salt broth


3 tablespoons butter
1 shallot, minced
1/2 cup Port
6 dried Calimyrna figs, stemmed and quartered (or dry fig of your choice)
3/4 teaspoon minced fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried, crumbled

Remove excess fat from duck breasts. and cut crisscross pattern into
fat but do not cut into meat.

Brush breasts with oil; rub with minced garlic and sprinkle with 1/2
teaspoon thyme and pepper. Cover and let stand 1 hour. (Can be prepared
1 day ahead. Refrigerate.)

Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add duck
bones, chicken backs and onion and cook until brown, turning
occasionally, about 12 minutes. Add both stocks. Bring to boil. Reduce
heat and simmer until reduced to 3/4 cup liquid, about 1 hour. Strain
and degrease duck stock. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and

Heat oven to 450°.

Season duck breasts with salt;

Heat a grill pan. When hot, add breast skin side down and cook 4
minutes. Turn and place grill pan into hot oven for about 3 to 5
minutes. Duck should be medium rare.
Pour off fat from skillet. Add 1 tablespoon butter to skillet and melt
over medium heat. Add shallot and sauté until translucent, about 2
minutes. Add Port and figs. Increase heat and boil until liquid is
reduced to glaze, scraping up any browned bits, about 4 minutes. Add
duck stock and boil until syrupy, adding any juices accumulated on duck
platter, about 6 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in remaining 2
tablespoons butter 1 tablespoon at a time. Season with salt and pepper.

Thinly slice duck on diagonal. Arrange on plates. Spoon sauce over.
Sprinkle with 3/4 teaspoon thyme.


  1. Ann, you've posted some beautiful dishes. I've never been able to cook duck perfectly, but you've inspired me to try again!

  2. Ann I am grateful you posted the duck!
    And all the photos are just mouth watering as always!


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