Ducks and Jakes

¬†This is a request from my nephew Jake, 25 and he’s never eaten duck. We eat a fair bit of duck, its a little expensive but no more so than most premium cuts of meat. Treated properly there is nothing better than a good duck breast. A lot of people over cook it thinking its like chicken but duck can be and should be eaten fairly rare, medium at best. Sometimes I will buy the whole duck but usually only when they are on special, there is a lot of waste in a whole duck unless you make your own stocks etc or duck soup. Generally the breasts are about $10 – $12 for two, bear in mind that would cost you $35 – $55 a plate in a restaurant so they are still good value for what they are. For crispy skinned duck breast just place the raw breasts skin side down in a COLD pan and bring to a sizzling fry. Once skin is golden and crispy ( 5-7)mins depending on size and heat, turn and seal underside for two minutes and then place in a pre-heated oven (180c) for a further 6-7 minutes (for medium), rest for 4 minutes before slicing. I often make Peking duck pancakes they are addictive, place sliced duck breast in a mandarin pancake add sticks of shallot, cucumber, pear or what ever takes your fancy. (peking duck refers to the marinade you cook the duck with) As in the main pic where I have used red current jelly I also often use that in the pancakes. Roll it all up and stuff face till you can’t move anymore. If I buy a whole duck one of my favourite things to do with left overs is make a Duck risotto, frozen green peas, some chantrelles or cepe mushroom if available where you live or enoki etc if not available. Make Stock with duck carcass after picking remaining meat off ¬†(you can use a roasted frame for this also) and use this to make your risotto. So there you go Jacob try some of these ideas and I bet rowing down the Avon takes on a whole new purpose.