Eclectic Bistro Fare

December 5, 2008

Duck Four Ways(or how to get the most out of your duck)

Lately everyone I know is feeling a pinch in their wallet. I recently bought a duck and so not to feel guilty about spending the money, I felt I should show you how you can utilize every bit of this bird. Some of the product I've made here will be used for months to come.

After this entry I'll begin conducting a monthly series on using Duck in as many ways as I can so as to educate you on what I call Beak to Foot cooking. Not one part of this beautiful foul will be wasted.

To start, we will begin with your basic stock and turn it into a demi-glace. A demi-glace is basically a stock that has been concentrated. Why would we make a demi-glace anyway? Because it has more uses than a stock, has a longer shelf life and is more flavor in a smaller package taking up less space in the fridge.

Things you'll need...

  • 1 leek

  • 2 carrots

  • 1 yellow onion

  • 4 cloves garlic

  • 2 celery stalks

  • 1 gallon water

  • 1 duck - neck, backbone, pelvis, breast bone and wings only (remove all skin and reserve)

  • 1sprig- thyme

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 tbs. black peppercorn

  • 2 cups red wine- I use pinot noir.

  • pinch of salt

I begin by bringing all ingeredients ( minus wine) to just before a boil on high heat. When the water begins to boil, I reduce the heat to low and simmer for about three hours. The liquid will reduce to about 3/4 the original volume. Then I strain all of this through a seive and put the stock into a fresh pot. At this point you have a beautiful stock for soups or gravies.

Next I add the red wine to the liquid and reduce to half of this volume. This is demi-glace. Some people add tomato paste and roast the bones but I don't think caramelization works with all sauces so I refrain from this when doing a demi made from a bird.

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