Mighty Duck


It didn’t take me too long to decide what recipe to use for Ott, A’s Iron Chef Duck Challenge. Of course, I would use a recipe from Alton Brown! I give you… Mighty Duck!

First, start with a freshly quartered duck.quarter duck

Gather your brine ingredients…brine ingredients 2

And combine 2 cups of orange-pineapple juice, 1/2 cup salt, 15 black peppercorns, and 4 smashed garlic cloves. Stir like crazy to dissolve the salt. (AB recommends a bunch of fresh thyme as well. I didn’t have fresh, but I added some dried thyme instead.)

Put the duck quarters in a zip-top bag…duck in bag

And pour the brine over the duck. Press the air out of the bag, and seal. Brine in the refrigerator for 2 – 2.5 hours.

duck in brineBoil 1.5-2 inches of water in a large pot.boil water

Put a colander on top of the boiling water, and lay the duck pieces in the colander. AB says to not overlap the duck pieces. I was just able to get everything to fit.duck in colander

Cover, and steam the duck for 45 minutes.steaming duck

Preheat the oven to 475 degrees. Put a cast iron skillet in the oven to heat. (My oven takes almost 20 minutes to get to 475. Don’t forget to turn this on well ahead of time!)cast iron

Oh, I don’t have a cast iron skillet. And our cookware is only rated to 450 degrees. So I pulled out the cast iron Dutch oven. It worked, just slip the legs between the grates!

Okay, so when the duck is done steaming…finished steaming

Put the legs, skin side down, in the hot cast iron skillet Dutch oven and roast at 475 degrees for 10 minutes.legs in oven

Then, add the breasts, skin side down, and roast for another 7 minutes.breast in oven

You’re looking for the meat to be a mahogany-brown color, and the skin to be nice a crispy.done duck

I could have cooked this for a few minutes longer, but it was late and we were hungry. So the skin wasn’t as crispy as it could have been. But it was good!

AB recommends cooking some shallots and chard in the duck fat for a few minutes. I didn’t have any chard, but I did have some kale, so I threw that in with the shallots, over low heat, tossing frequently, just until the kale turned bright green and tender. Well, as tender as kale gets, anyway.

We ate the duck with kale, brown rice, mango slices, and citrus-glazed parsnips. We had so much food, it was like Thanksgiving!

Printable recipe card:mighty duck recipe card

Now I have these extra duck bones…  From Mess Hall To Bistro has a recipe for Duck Soup I just might have to try!

Go, try some duck!


2 Responses to Mighty Duck

  1. Susan says:

    Wow – you have really broadened John’s horizon’s in the food category! Sounds like you had a good meal.

  2. jen says:

    Thanks for the shout out to my soup! I had a blast with Ott,A’s Iron Chef Challenge, hope you did too! I’m looking forward to the lamb next month!

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