2.3 to 3 kg (5 lb 8 oz to 6 lb 12 oz) duck
1 orange, sliced in half
1 red onion, quartered
2.5 cm (1 inch) piece of fresh ginger, roughly sliced
Freshly ground black pepper
90 g (1/4 cup) honey
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon orange juice
Mini Potato Gratins (recipe follows)
150 g (1 bunch) rocket (arugula)
2 pears, finely sliced
Mini Potato Gratins:
600 g (1 lb 5 oz) potatoes, peeled and very finely sliced
185 ml (3/4 cup) cream
Freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 120°C (250°F). Remove the parson's nose and a small amount of the surrounding area as this is where the oil glands are located and they can cause an unpleasant flavor to permeate the duck. The neck and the last two joints of the wings should also be removed. Rinse the duck inside and out then dry well with paper towels. Season liberally with salt and pepper both inside and out and place the orange, onion and ginger in the cavity and truss legs with kitchen string. Carefully prick the duck skin all over, but avoid piercing the flesh by inserting a very fine skewer into the skin at an angle almost parallel to the duck so you are only piercing skin and fat.
2. Put the honey, cumin, cinnamon and orange juice in a small bowl, stir to combine then set aside. Place the duck, breast-side up, on a rack in a baking dish and place in the oven. Roast the duck for 2 hours. Remove from the oven, increase the heat to 200°C (400°F) then return the duck to the oven. Cook for 40 minutes, brushing the orange glaze over the duck 15 minutes before the end of cooking time.
3. Remove from the oven and serve with mini potato gratins and a simple salad of rocket leaves and finely sliced pear.
Mini Potato Gratins
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F). Cut a piece of baking paper into 16 strips 15 x 2 cm (6 x 3/4 inch). Line six 125 ml (1/2 cup) muffin tins with the strips in a cross pattern with strips overlapping on each side. This will create little handles to remove your gratins with.
2. Place all the ingredients in a bowl and toss to combine. Layer the potatoes in the muffin tins and pour over any remaining liquid. Place in the oven and cook for 40 minutes.
From Bills Open Kitchen by Bill Granger (William Morrow, 2004). Originally published in Australia in 2003 by Murdock Books Pty Limited. © 2003 by Bill Granger.
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