Friday, 9 November 2012

Making duck part 2: Deboning, making faces, marinate, chopping and finally, a Asian "casoulette"!

So in a fit of insanity, I decided it was a great idea to not just attempt to make one, but two ducks at the same time. My logic.. well, if I'm going to have one in the oven anyways... Here's part two on my misadventures into making an Asian duck casoulette at home. I was already making a roasted Peking duck (Part 1 here), so thought to keep things in the same ballpark.

As I stared down the duck #2, it seemed to taunt me, knowing I'd have to pluck any remaining feather shafts out of its skin. *Growl*

30min later - Duck #2 is cleaned and deboned. 20min was spent cursing as I removed stray quills. A lot of quills... and 10min actually deboning the duck... pretty easy, just lopped off the thighs and deboned out the thigh and drumstick bone, cut off the drumlette and wings, and filleted out the breast. Just for a good measure, I carved off the tinny bit of back muscle and kept the back skin intact.

Next up was making the marinade. Now a little old Chinese lady told me her secret to making this dish was adding in fermented tofu. Seriously? Okay. I have to admit, I made some faces as the tofu squelched, and I mean squelched as I scooped it out of the chili sauce jar it was sitting in. Smelled alright, though it looked nasty as I mashed it into a paste with a spoon.

And the duck pieces sitting happy in the marinade. I tossed in a few pieces of skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs just for the heck of it. There's a small piece of pork belly in there too... its supposed to make it taste even better.  Since its the part that makes great bacon, not going to complain.  Tossed the whole thing into my fridge overnight.

The next day, I chopped up some taro, sweet potatoes, onions, garlic, carrots and celery

And thought my largest roasting pan may not be able to handle everything...

A well, we'll see what happens! Duck and chicken pieces placed on top, with the huge pieces of fatty duck back skin covering up the chicken pieces with ease. Added in a cup of chicken broth so things don't dry out and into the oven it goes!

About an hr in, I heard lots of *sizzle sizzle sizzle*. Uh oh. Turns out the duck rendered so much fat, it was now splatting out all over my oven. Took the meat off (turns out it was done, so set it aside, transferred all the root veges to another casserole dish, decanted off all the fat and poured the cooking juices back and let the veges roast for another hr till they were tender yummy and saturated with duck juices.  Made a HUGE mess of my oven.  Its a good thing I lined it before starting...

As for the duck? well, who can say no to crispy skinned duck like this?  Forgot to prick the chicken skin cuz it didn't crisp up, but the succulent duck with crispy skin more than made up for all the hassle making this dish.

Recipe for Asian Style Duck Casoulette - for anyone crazy enough to try!
Ingredients
1 young duck clean and deboned
3-4 skin on, bone in chicken thigh pieces
1 palm sized piece of pork belly
Marinade
3 Tbsp granulated garlic
1 tsp black pepper
1 stick cinnamon
2-3 star anise "flowers"
2 tsp Chinese
5 spice powder
2Tbsp dark soy sauce
1 cup white wine (don't use if you're planning to make this gluten free - sub with chicken broth)
2 shots Canadian Club or decent whiskey (don't use if you're planning to make this gluten free)
3-4 cloves garlic chopped
3 one inch cubes of fermented tofu in chili sauce mashed
1 tsp ginger root finely minced
Veges for roasting
1 cup taro cubed - smaller the cube, faster it cooks
1 cup sweet potato cubed
2 carrots sliced on bias
2 stalks celery chopped
1 cup chicken stock
How to
1. Debone Mix all marinade ingredients together well, dump all over duck, chicken and pork belly. Marinate overnight.
2. Chop up all veges while meat comes up to room temp.
3. Layer veges and broth in large DEEP roasting pan, add meat on top
4. Bake in preheated 375F oven. Check meat at 1hr. Remove if cooked. Veges may take 1hr more. Decant off any rendered fat.

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