Roasted Duck

Whether you've bagged a bird or two yourself this fall or grabbed them out of the frozen food section of your grocery store, here's a new recipe that will be sure to please. Many people do not like duck because they think it is too tough or that it has no flavor. Be careful of the overcooking! When done correctly, the duck will be moist and delicious. To prepare one average size duck, 3-5 pounds, you'll need:

3 cups              cubed French bread
1/8 cup             diced celery
1/8 cup             diced onion
2 TB                oil
1 1/2 cups          port wine, divided
1 wedge             orange
pinch               cinnamon
dash                salt and pepper
1/8 cup             orange juice concentrate
1/2 cup             dried cherries
2 TB                corn starch (optional)

Saute the celery and the onions in the oil. Add 1/2 cup of the Port wine and cook for one minute. Remove from heat and put the bread cubes in this mixture. Rub the inside of the duck with the fresh orange wedge and salt and pepper the cavity. Stuff the cavity with the bread mixture. Place the duck in a 300 degree oven for about 2 1/2 - 3 hours or until the leg can pull away from the body. The duck should be tender, not mushy.

For the sauce, in a saucepan place the remaining 2 cups of port wine, with the dried cherries, orange juice concentrate and cinnamon. Let simmer by half. Then thicken with a little cornstarch if necessary, by mixing the 2 TB of cornstarch first with some cold water, then adding it to the sauce. Serve with the duck. As for wine, a dry red one would go nicely. There are some great cabernets from Chile on the market now. Why not try a Marques de Caceres? And, as always, a creative cook is a good cook.