Quack, Quack…The Duck by Philip T

18 09 2008


I had a taste of duck breast a couple of days ago and i really liked it, i had never eaten any other poultry except chicken and turkey and to be honest i was getting tired of both so this was really a welcome change for my tastebud. I did some research and i found out that the average american eats less than half a pound of duck annually compared with beef 60 pounds and chicken 84.7 pounds according to the USDA. According to the U.S. Duck Council an association of the country’s major White Pekin duck producers a research in 2001 and 2006 found that consumer’s attitudes towards duck was a.) Fatty/greasy b.) Gamy c.) Difficult to prepare changed to: a.) Difficult to prepare b.) Difficult to find c.) Fatty/greasy Pekin duck is a domesticated breed of duck used primarily for eggs and meat, it traces it’s roots back to tha Mallard bred from China. In 1873 nine ducks were exported to Long island, New York and are sometimes referred to as “Long Island duckling” a popular breed in the United States about 95% of duck meat consumed is of the Pekin variety. Mature ducks weigh between 8 and 11 pounds with an average lifespan if not eaten at an early age is about 9-12 years. The ducks are ready for slaughter at around 6 to 8 weeks of age with 7 weeks considered optimum, prime commercial weight is around 6-6.5 pounds. It produces more meat desirable for eating than other breeds of duck, it’s meat is tender and mild and well suited for a range of dishes. It’s meat is a good source of iron, niacin (B3) and selinium. A boneless, skinless duck breast has about 40% less fat than boneles, skinless chicken breast according to the Culver Duck Farms Nutritional Comparison Chart Table which compares duck with chicken, pork, beef, and turkey. Retailed distribution of packaged duck parts can be found mostly in the Northeast but is slowly gaining popularity across parts of the country. Maple Leaf Farms in Milford Ind. and Cresent Duck Farms in Aquebogue, N.Y., also Culver Farms of Middlebury, Ind., supply 87% of all the White Pekin available year-round. Duck parts can be bought in speciality and meat markets also at Sunset Foods and Treasure Island as well as peapod.com prices range from $4.50-$6.00 per pound for legs and $8.00-$16.00 a pound for breast fillets or order online at www.mapleleaffarms.com and www.culverduck.com which also has a recipe and preparation tutorial on how to cook and prep duck meat for the novice home cook.

In my opinion pan fried duck breast is the way to go because of ease of preparation and the wonderful and scrumptious taste and satisfaction it gives you when you sink your teeth into it, to prepare duck for pan frying place duck breasts skin side up and score shallow cuts across the skin at about 1/4 inch intervals taking care not to cut into the meat this will allow the fat to render out which makes for a leaner and crispier skin then season with salt and pepper on both sides, in a skillet set over medium-low heat add a little oil just enough to coat the bottom and wait for it to reach it’s smoke point which is the time where you would want to put the duck breast in skin side down, achieve a crisp golden brown on it’s skin while at the same time as it renders it’s fat out about 6-7mins. discard excess oil then turn over increase heat to medium and cook for another 2-3 mins. until bottom is brown and breast is springy to the touch, remove from pan and transfer to a cutting board to rest for 5-10 mins. then cut on the bias into 1/8 inch thick slices. Serve with sauce slightly drizzled on top. More on sauces in my next blog. hope the info. will educate more people into the world of the Duck……Quack….. Quack….




One response

18 09 2008

Great post!!

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