Sunday, November 27, 2011

Roasted Muscovy Duck with Donabe Smoked "Jus"

I had a lot of cooking, eating, and drinking over the long Thanksgiving weekend this year.

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On Thanksgiving Day, a couple of friends came to our house and 4 of us had a wonderful time together. Instead of Turkey, I roasted Muscovy duck, which I ordered from McCall's Meat and Fish in Los Feliz. As usual, my roasted duck is a 2-day process. I made dry cure seasoning (1T sea salt, 6-7 juniper berries-minced, 1 tsp Chinese 5 spice, 1/4 tsp ginger powder, grated zest from 1 orange, 1/2 tsp ground black pepper) and rubbed all over the duck. It was put in the fridge (in a large tight-sealed bag) for 2 nights. On the morning of the dinner, the duck was took out of the bag and let air-dried in the fridge until it was ready to cook. Orange wedges were stuffed in the duck and roasted until done. (roasted at 325F for a little over 1 hour, then at 450F until the thigh meat reaches at 170F).

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For the sauce, I took an extra step from my regular jus. I first smoked the giblets of duck in my donabe smoker, "Ibushi Gin" with sakura (cherry blossom) tree smoke chips. Then, used the smoked neck and kidney for making jus with them. As for the smoked duck liver, I minced it and added to the finished jus at the last minute.

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My Thanksgiving roasted duck with donabe smoked jus was ready. It came out so wonderful, and what a marvelous idea of smoking the giblets to make the jus! The smokey jus gave such a wonderful layer of flavors to the dish. And the minced smoked liver was exquisite.

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Long fun evening with a lot of food and wine. Dessert was a delicious apple pie, made by my friend. We opened 5 bottles of wine plus our homemade aged Ume-shu (plum liqueur).

Happy donabe Thanksgiving.