A friend of mine who is an avid duck hunter asked me if I wanted one of his kills. Heck yeah! I told him I wasn't sure how I was gonna cook it... I wouldn't mind attempting a whole roasted duck again, but wasn't sure I'd have the time. Because I was so unsure of what I wanted, he just went ahead and brought me a whole duck... and by whole duck, I mean, head, feathers, et al. SQUICK!!
I remained calm as he explained to me my options. He showed me where to cut and how to get the breasts out, and also explained plucking. *deep breath* After some twitter discussion about how it plucking wouldn't be worth the trouble, as whole ducks are really lean this time of year. So I just breasted it out. It was really easy... just a few simple cuts and they came right out without much damage. I had to avoid looking at the ducks face, but other than that...
After a bit of research, I thought it best to stick with a stir fry. I am very comfortable cooking Asian-style dishes, and I had most of the ingredients. Wild duck is a very dark and flavorful meat, so I treated it like beef, similar to this Nam Tok Beef recipe. This turned out to be a good way to cook duck. It was not overly gamy, but plenty rich and flavorful.
Wild Duck Breast Stir Fry
2 Wild duck breasts
3 Tablespoons soy sauce, plus more for cooking
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon fresh grated ginger
2 garlic cloves, grated
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 large onion, halved and sliced
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1 Tablespoon sesame seeds
shredded raw cabbage
sliced green onions
cooked white rice
Combine the soy sauce, sesame oil, vinegar, ginger, garlic, white pepper and red pepper flakes in a container with the duck breasts. Let marinate in the fridge for at least 1 hour. Once marinated, slice duck breasts thinly, reserving the marinade. Heat oil in a skillet. Add onions and cook until they start to soften. Add a couple splashes of soy sauce to the onions, and cook another few minutes. Push the onions around the edge of the skillet, and add the sliced duck and marinade tot he middle. Cook the duck, turning often, tossing with the onions until meat is cooked through. Add sesame seeds and cook another minute or so. Serve on top of white rice and raw cabbage.