- 1 duck, legs separate from the crown and crown trimmed (you can ask a butcher to do this or buy two legs and a crown separately)
- 2 tbsp honey
- ½ clementine, zested and juiced, or ½ orange, zested, plus 2 tbsp orange juice
- duck-fat roasties, watercress and gravy, to serve (see below)
TipDuck-fat roasties The fat from the duck makes the best roast potatoes. To serve four, cut 800g Maris Piper potatoes into chunks, boil for 5 mins, then drain, ruffle and roast with the duck fat at 220C/200C fan/gas 7 for about 1 hr, turning them twice.
Duck gravy Heat 1 tbsp sunflower oil in a shallow pan over a medium heat and brown parts of the duck carcass (if you asked a butcher to prepare the duck, ask for the offcuts) along with 1 chopped onion, 1 chopped carrot and a small piece of star anise. Scatter over 1 tbsp flour, then pour over 50ml port and bubble for 2-3 mins. Add 300ml chicken stock and reduce for 10-12 mins to thicken. Pass through a sieve.
Duck au vin Instead of slow-roasting the duck legs, they can be braised in red wine. Brown in a little oil with 1 chopped onion, 1 carrot, a sprig of thyme and 1 bay leaf then add 500ml red wine and 300ml chicken stock and simmer gently for 1 hr 30 mins, or until the meat is tender. Remove the legs and veg, then boil the juices down to make a sauce.
Glazing options I’ve used a classic glaze of orange and honey, but you could try a mix of soy sauce, honey and five spice powder, or maple syrup and balsamic vinegar.
The secret to crispy skin is to lightly salt the duck for 24 hrs before roasting. This makes the skin extra crisp and gives the meat a deeper flavour. You can also enhance the salt with spices, fresh herbs or grated citrus.