Last night, for the first time ever, I made duck at home.
I am a huge fan of duck, but have had my share of poorly cooked duck at many eateries - often paying a a high price for the pleasure of undercooked/overcooked/flabby-skinned duck.
So, when I happend upon some nice looking duck quarters at a local grocery store, I said - what the heck, it can't be that difficult.
I decided to use the technique suggesed in a Chinese cookbook that I like very much, which is to steam the duck on the stove - the recipe I was reading finishes the duck by deep frying it, but I figured I could crisp up the skin nicely under a hot broiler.
Long story short, $6 of duck quarters (dark meat), 1.5 hours of gentle steaming and 10 minutes under a hot broiler got me and my SO a delicious dinner at a fraction of the price it would have cost at any eatery. The duck came out about as close to perfect as one could expect - moist, flavourful meat, and crispy skin with just the smallest amount of fat underneath (and lets face it, duck is all about the skin baby!).
The best think is that you steam the duck in a bowl to prevent the fat/juices from running into the steaming water. I drained and reserved the liquid and now have the added bonus of having a small amount of duck sauce and, better yet, duck fat!
Now I know that duck fat is great for cooking with, but I've never actually used it before, so I'd appreaciate your suggestions (I know potatoes roasted in duck fat are awsome).
While you're at it, any good duck recipes would also be welcome - so long as the recipe (if properly followed) yields a crisp skin.
Finally, to those who've heard duck is a pain/difficult to cook - all I can say is it just ain't so!