Even if you don’t raise your own like we do, or maybe you hunt wild ones, they are a delicious alternative to chicken. Variety is the spice of life, right? There’s no white meat on ducks, it is all dark meat and there’s not a lot of it. The Rouen ducks we raised dressed out at about 4 1/2 lbs which sounds big for a chicken but a duck that size feeds only 2-4 people. I stuffed it with an apple dressing and roasted it. But it doesn’t have to end there. I cooked up the bones to make broth for soup later. Ducks, being waterfowl are greasier than chickens so when making broth, there’s going to be a lot of fat. I’m all for leaving fat in most dishes for flavour and vitamins but this is a little too much.
After the broth is strained, and reserving any meat leftover, I put it in the fridge until the fat has solidified then I spoon most of it off. I don’t throw it away, though! Duck fat is great for frying potatoes. Go ahead and use the broth for a good vegetable soup base. Here’s a delicious, hearty duck soup recipe, perfect for a cold, snowy day.
clear gel stock remaining from the duck, fat skimmed off
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
Juice of 1/2 small lemon
2 Tbsp. fermented soy sauce
1 quart of diced tomatoes
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup chopped raw turnip or rutabaga
3 medium sized potatoes, cubed
1/2 medium sized onion, chopped
3 small, OR two large bay leaves
1 Tbsp. dried oregano
1/3 cup shredded carrots
1/4 cup pearl or pot barley or lentils
Reserved duck meat
Simmer slowly, for 4 or 5 hours. Remove the bay leaves before serving.
I know the vanilla extract is an odd ingredient to find in a soup recipe but it really adds an element to the soup, it just takes it up a notch.
So, do you eat duck?