It was the night before we needed to go shopping at the grocery store...and we didn't have a meal planned out for din-din.  And so we tore through the freezer and pantry and fridge to put something together.  And the result was glorious.  I love those sorts of meals.  Where you don't have a plan and you have to make what you've got work, experiment with different spices to flavor the food, and hope it all comes together.  And it did!  It just would have been better if it was December and not a warm early summer night.  

The Menu:
Whole roasted duck rubbed in curry, ground mustard, cinnamon, paprika, salt, and pepper
Stuffed with bread, raisin, duck liver, and onion dressing
Roasted alongside a sauce of fruit, chicken broth, and cherry wine
Served over black pepper mashed potatoes
With a side of sauteed brussels sprouts
And paired with a Michigan cherry wine
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The spice blend for rubbing down the duck.
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The duck all prepped and stuck in the oven, ready to roast.
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Duck mid-roast. I did baste it, even though you don't have to because it's so fatty, because I wanted the fruity glaze to coat the bird.
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While the duck was cooking, I boiled peeled russet potatoes. They're mashed with milk, butter, salt, and lots and lots of black pepper.
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I took a bag of frozen brussels sprouts and poured them into a pan with a little bit of water. Once they thawed and the water evaporated, I added butter, salt, and pepper to brown them and crisp them up.
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Done! Brown and crispy and smelling delicious!
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I wasn't thrilled with the sauce. It was grayish-brown and really fatty. We ended up using the fruit but not much of the liquid. It tasted good because the spice rub melted off the duck as it cooked and helped to flavor the fruit sauce. Then I'd baste the duck with the fruit sauce, glazing it with the seasoned fruit. Yum.
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The stuffing turned out pretty well. It's seasoned with poultry seasoning, sauteed onions, dried parsley, raisins, and the duck liver. I didn't want to throw out the duck innards, so I used the neck to help flavor the sauce and cut up the liver for the stuffing. The liver meat is a little tough, so next time I'll sautee it with the onions for longer or boil it to soften it.
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A complete meal! The duck was just cooked through, tender, and had a nice, crispy, flavorful skin. It paired together well, but again, for a winter meal.
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Zoomed in because I like all of the color and the browned sprouts.
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We paired the meal with the same wine that we used to help make the fruit sauce. It's a dark cherry wine, tart but not very sweet. A little syrupy and a great winter wine. So all-in-all, a perfect meal to try again once the snow falls.
 


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