Duck à l'Orange

Duck. You either love it or you hate it. If you prefer the dark meat when eating chicken, you'll probably like duck. It won't be greasy if it is cooked right--and the trick is to cook it long enough. Duck is a nice pleasant change to chicken, chicken, chicken. One of the most popular ways to prepare it is Duck à l'Orange. Sounds fancy, but it is quite easy to prepare. For 4 people, you'll need:

1 ea.                  duck, not shot up too bad
1 ea.                  orange
to taste               salt and pepper
2 pieces               celery
1/4 ea.                onion
1/2 cup                orange juice concentrate
3 cups                 brown gravy
1/2 cup                granulated sugar
1/2 ea.                cinnamon stick

Rinse the duck out with cold water. Rub the inside with the juice of a fresh orange. Sprinkle the cavity with salt and pepper. Leave the rind of the orange in the cavity and chop up the onion and celery and place that inside, too. Roast in a covered pan three hours at 375 degrees.

In a large saucepan, combine your gravy and orange juice concentrate. Skim the juice drippings from the duck in the oven and add that to your gravy. Add the cinnamon stick and simmer.

Heat up a teflon pan. When hot, throw in the sugar and keep stirring with a metal spoon until the sugar melts. It will be dark brown in color. Then add to your sauce slowly and keep whisking to blend in the sugar. Make sure to start your gravy in a large saucepan, because at this point, your mixture will start bubbling up and boiling fast with the addition of the sugar. Whisk it in quickly, being careful not to touch the dark sugar which is about 300 degrees at this point! Let simmer 15 minutes then serve over the duck.

What wine would blend well with this duck? It is too overpowering for a delicate white. Why not try a California Merlot from Duckhorn Vineyards? And as always, a creative cook is a good cook.