Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Duck Interrupted

My darling, dashingly handsome, dear husband recently took to the water with his qayaq, a huge 19 foot expedition hunting craft that could fit a Hong Kong family in the cockpit with room in the front hatch for their Filipino nanny. With a full hunting arsenal strapped under his deck rigging, he made his way across the lakes and creeks in search for southbound teal and other ducks on a layover from Ulukhaktok to Rio de Janeiro.

He returned with a bin full of ducks and a big grin. Whee!!

After a fierce outdoor plucking session, followed by delicate feather singeing by Primus stove to get rid the smaller more tenacious feathers and finally a degutting and cleaning session, I ended up with a denuded duck. So lovely, it makes me blush.


The duck was brined for a couple of days and then marinated in lemon, garlic and aromatic herbs for a few more days. The brining and marinading are neccessary this time of year otherwise the duck would taste like fish. Not just any fish but pondweed smoking, mudflat gangsta fish.

When I say brining, I don't mean anything more than rubbing the ducks with generous amounts of salt, dumping them into a small vessel and adding enough cold water to cover and tossed into the back of the fridge or in our case, onto the back porch. 

Before roasting, give the duck a quick rinse and pat dry with paper towels.
Then prick the skin with a small knife, deep enough to puncture the skin but not the meat.
Sprinkle with salt and pepper then toss it into a pan breast side up and shoot it into a 450F preheated oven.

Let it roast for about 20 minutes or until the smoke alarm goes off.

I broiled it for a few more minutes to crisp up the skin (it's all about crispy skin in this house). It rested on the counter for another 10 minutes while the puppies paced back and forth waiting for me to let down my guard so they could steal a lick and nibble. 

Carving into it was just a matter of finding the keel of breastbone (the thin plate that runs down along the sternum, perpendicular to the ribs) and slicing along that. Then cleave right through and along the of the spine.

 The duck was just enough to share between my DH and I.

The girls got duck hearts and organs in the puppy stew that night!

1 comment:

  1. Hungry now. Going duck hunting next weekend. Been working on my shotgunning skills in the hope of not embarrassing myself.