Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Anatra Arrosto con Melagrana e Tarrasaco

Duck has to be one of my favorite proteins. It has the delicious crispy skin and divine fat. Lets not forget about the fact that it has such sweet & flavorful meat. It puts me in a happy place every time I think of this succulent bird. In this recipe, I have taken a nice seasonal approach by combining the duck with bitter dandelion greens and the sweet and sour pomegranate seeds. They both play off so well and add a lightness to the super rich duck meat. Duck can be a little tricky to make, but when done right, there are few things better.

TT= to taste

For Duck:
5# Duck, giblets removed
1 Blood Orange, cut in half
1 Bulb garlic
2 sprigs rosemary
4 sprigs thyme
2 sprigs sage
1 cup Grappa
TT Fleur de Sel or Kosher Salt
TT Coarse ground black pepper

Using finger reach between the breast meat and the skin and separate as best as you can
use a sharp knife and prick the skin liberally all over the duck especially around the breasts and legs and thighs
cut off the excess fat around the cavity and the neck
stuff the cavity with the oranges, herbs, 1/4 of the pomegranate seeds, salt & pepper
truss the duck
season the outside of the skin liberally with salt and let sit at room temp for 1 hour
Preheat oven to 425F
Bring 4 qts of water to a boil, hold duck by the legs and briefly dip the duck in the boiling water. Try to get the legs dipped as well. This will help tighten the skin
Pat duck dry
Season with a touch more salt, then the black pepper
Place breast side up in roasting pan
Add the neck and the grappa to the roasting pan
Put in the oven and roast for 30 minutes(15-20 minutes in when some fat has rendered, add the garlic bulb.)
Flip duck over so breast side is down and roast for 30 minutes
Flip duck over again and turn on the broiler and cook until skin is deep brown color (about 10-15 minutes). Skin should be nice and crispy
Remove duck from roasting pan and allow to rest for 10-15 minutes
Remove the string from the duck

For Contorno:
1 Pomegranate, seeded (cut in half, invert over bowl, and beat with a wooden spoon to remove the seeds)
1 lg. Bunch Dandelion Greens, washed and cut into 3" pieces (sub swiss chard, rainbow chard, kale, escarole)
1/2 cup white wine
TT salt
TT pepper
1 sprigs rosemary
2 sprigs thyme

After the duck has finished roasting, make the contorno
In large saute pan take 4T of the rendered duck fat and heat over medium
Squeeze the garlic out of the roasted bulb
add the garlic from the bulb to the saute pan along with the herbs
add the greens and saute for 1 minute
add the wine and cook for another two minutes
season the greens with salt and pepper
transfer the greens, and the duck to a platter and garnish with the pomegranate seeds
Serve immediately

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