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Roast and smoked duck risotto recipe

 

Photo: Roast and smoked duck risotto

Photo: Roast and smoked duck risotto

Whenever we find a free range duck on offer we squeeze it into the freezer for a really special meal. Last weekend Danny roasted a duck and served it with a blueberry and plum sauce. Superb. Incidentally we usually cook fruit with the duck to make a sort of instant sauce. This time he roasted the duck “plain” and made the sauce separately. The duckiness of the duck was so good that I think that we’ll cook duck this way from now on.

“We can make a duck risotto with the leftovers. Possibly two.” Danny chortled as he cut himself yet another slice. But there’s the rub, when I opened the pack of duck from the fridge it was just a carcass with a sprinkle of flesh. I struggle to cut just 100g of meat. Barely enough to add to a duck risotto for one.

Luckily when Seraphina and I visited the Norfolk coast I had bought some smoked duck as a treat. So I added 100g of this to the mix. The risotto was outstanding – it could have fed three or four with a pud but I was delighted that there were just the two of us. Instincts said lick the bowl clean but we both held back with regret the next day.

Smoked duck can be difficult to get hold of but you can cure and smoke (or not smoke) your own quite easily. This is the recipe that we use regularly when we are feeling lazy and don’t want to smoke the bacon. Our friend Tessa uses our basic bacon cure and then smokes her duck breasts in a chiminea with a long duct pipe as an extension. You can read my post – explaining the dynamics – and see a picture of it in action here. A lot of shops are selling off their chimineas quite cheaply now as it’s getting towards the end of the season. Why not snap one up and give home smoking a go? The money that you save will be paid back so quickly as commercially produced bacon is a huge rip off.

Risottos are a great way of making a little meat go a very long way. This tasted as if it was bursting with duck and would be a great alternative dinner party dish.

Roast and smoked duck risotto recipe (for 2-3 greedy people)

Ingredients:

2 tbsp of duck fat – saved from the roast
200g of Arborio rice
100g of roast duck meat – chopped into 1-2cm chunks
100g of smoked duck meat – chopped into 1-2cm chunks
1 medium red onion – chopped
1 chunky clove of garlic chopped fine (or a teaspoon of garlic granules)
I small Romano pepper and one red bell pepper (deseeded and chopped) ours weighed in total 250g
4g of fresh thyme leaves rubbed from the stems
450-500ml of vegetable stock (I used Marigold vegetable stock powder)
2 large pinches of smoked paprika

Method:
Heat the duck fat in a large heavy bottomed sauté pan.
Gently fry the chopped red onion until it becomes translucent.
Add the Arborio rice and stir to coat the rice with the oil.
Add the chopped garlic and stir.
Add the chopped peppers and herbs.
Add the hot stock about 200ml at a time and stir until it is absorbed.
When the rice is soft but still has a bite stir remove from the heat and stir in the chopped duck meat. Cover the pan for five minutes to allow the meat to heat through.
Sprinkle with grated parmesan cheese and serve on warm plates.


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