Did you know that the only way to get Wild Duck in the USA is to shoot it yourself? Well, you could also have a hunting pal that might be willing to share his or her bounty with you if you promised to used this recipe and cook for them! Wild duck, unlike chickens or turkeys, that require an internal temp of 170 degrees, is best eaten rare, like a delicious, juicy T-bone steak.
- Wild (not domestic) whole duck(s), prepped (gutted, remove head and feet, pluck all feathers, and remove shot and any bruised areas)
- Your favorite cooking oil (we like Olive Oil)
- Coarse Sea Salt ground up
- Garlic (optional)
- Sweet Apple
- Whole Cloves
- White Wine
- Heavy Whipping Cream
- Preheat oven to 450F. Rinse duck with water. Pat dry with paper towels. Rub the duck thoroughly on the outside and inside cavity with olive oil. Sprinkle the duck with a generous amount of the coarse sea salt. If you like garlic, sprinkle a very light amount of it on the outside too. Don’t use a heavy hand with the garlic.
- Take some cloves and poke them into an apple slice, a sprig of rosemary, and a little wedge of onion, and stuff inside of the duck. (If you are cooking a larger duck, like a Mallard, you can add more stuffing inside of the duck.)
- Place the ducks, with the breast up, in a roasting pan and put in the middle rack of the oven. Lower the temperature in the over to 425F.
- Depending on the kind of duck you are cooking, the times will vary. If the duck weighs less than a pound, it will cook in about 15 minutes. If the duck is larger, such as a mallard, it will take up to 25 minutes. We suggest you cook the duck until the internal temperature reaches 135F. You can test with a meat thermometer, or if you have an instant read thermometer.
- Our suggestion is that it’s better to have the duck come out rarer, because you can always put the bird back in the oven if it’s not cooked enough. If you overcook it, it will taste gamey. The meat should look like a rare steak, (not raw), with the juices running red when you cut into it.
- Once the meat is done as described above, you can remove it from the oven. Put it on a plate to rest, with the breast side down, for 15 minutes. Take the items that were put in the duck cavity out before you serve the meal.
- Do not throw out the drippings and browned bits in the roasting pan. Put the pan on the stove on medium heat. Scrape the browned bits up, and add a bit of white wine in to deglaze the fat. Whisk this into the wine, to a reduction. Add a little heavy cream, and even some berries (sweet) if you want. You now have a wonderful gravy to use on the duck.
- Serve ducks with your favorite rice or fingerling potatoes. We enjoy it with Zatarain’s® Fire Roasted Vegetables & Rice Mix and a sweet coleslaw.
Recipe provided by our hunting machine friend, J.R. Rogus. Thanks John!