This three-part technique starts with a stove-top sear to render fat followed by a stint in the oven for a steam in a flavorful broth. A final roast results in juicy meat and crisp skin. This recipe first appeared in our December 2013 issue along with David McAninch’s article The World of Duck.
- 1 Long Island or Pekin duck
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
- 4 sprigs rosemary
- 4 sprigs thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 small yellow onion, quartered
- Butchers’ string, for tying
- 3 tbsp. olive oil
- 3 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 2 cups duck or chicken stock
- 1⁄2 cup dry white wine
- 3⁄4 cup sugar
- 3⁄4 cup white wine vinegar
- 6 mandarin oranges, peeled and seeded
- Heat oven to 325°. Season duck inside and out with salt and pepper and stuff cavity with garlic, rosemary, thyme, bay leaves, and onion. Tie legs of duck together with butchers’ string. Heat oil and butter in a roasting pan over medium-high heat. Cook duck, turning as needed, until browned, 8–10 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside. Discard all but 3 tbsp. of the fat from the pan; return pan to medium-high heat. Add stock and wine to pan; bring to a boil. Return duck to pan, breast side up, and cover pan tightly with aluminum foil; bake until an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of leg reads 155°, 40 minutes to an hour. Remove foil and increase oven temperature to 450°. Bake until skin is brown and slightly crisp, 25–30 minutes. Rest 20 minutes before carving.
- Bring sugar, vinegar, mandarins, and 1⁄2 cup water to a boil in a 2-qt. saucepan. Reduce heat to medium; cook until mandarins break down and sauce is slightly thick, 45 minutes to an hour. To serve, carve duck and arrange on a platter; spoon sauce over the top.