"Man who waits for roast duck to fly into mouth must wait very, very long time." Jules Renard
I've been thinking about experimenting with a home-made duck confit but I don't know where to buy duck thighs. The aunties and uncles at a few wet markets I went to said it's not worthwhile for them to sell only duck thighs. So this morning, I decided to buy the whole duck and to try to roast the entire bird. I've roasted chickens so many times now but am curious how it would be like with a duck.
In this roasting process, I will aim to collect as much duck fat as possible. They keep for months and are good for using on mashed potatoes instead of butter. I could also keep them for my duck confit if I can get my hands on some duck thighs.
After a few searches on the web, I aggregated the knowledge and did it my own way as follows:
|After cleaning duck by rubbing salt all over, with a sharp knife, I make a slit on the skin and fat, |
but NOT ON THE MEAT.
|Criss-cross the slits|
|It's easier than it looks. Just be sure to use a sharp knife and run it along smoothly. I also prick holes to allow for more fats to flow out. The more fat you can collect, the better.|
|I give it another round of salt as a marinade. I've also trussed the leg the same way I trussed the chicken. I set it up on a wire gauze with a tray below lined with foil to catch the melting duck fat. Popped it in the oven at 150C.|
|After an hour, I turn it over and retain temp at 150C.|
|After 2 hours, I find a dead alien shoving his fist at me. Am wondering how the meat can be tender since it's starting to dry out and I still have 2 hours to go. I decided to drop temp to 140C.|
|After three hours, I yank it out to find it's looking like serious business - and it smells marvellous! As I turn it over again and pop it back in for the 4th hour, I prepare the glaze.|
|At the 4th hour, I remove the bird and brush my syrup all over and put it back in the oven. So far, so good, and then... I made one costly mistake...|
|In the last 5 minutes, I put it on high grill to achieve a crispy effect on the skin. Unfortunately, I also put the bird on the highest level and it burns right before my eyes after only 2 minutes!|
|The duck fat I collected. Now, I'm in a serious relationship with duck fat. It's complicated.|
|I decided to use the duck fat to make carrot confit for my caregroup tonight - sprinkle with salt and pepper, roast till soft, blend and make into a dip. Add za'atar and ground peanut.|
|Many people said they couldn't believe I didn't add sugar.|