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wilburpan

Duck! (First time)

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One of the things I really wanted to try with Smaug was to cook duck. This summer my family and I were lucky enough to visit China, and we spent several days in Beijing eating Peking Duck every night. My kids love duck, and that was the main reason why I bought the rotisserie basket with my KK 23â€. But for the first time I was going to try it, I decided to take a very basic approach.

 

Here’s what I started with.

 

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Prepping the duck was pretty straightforward. After taking out the liver, gizzards, heart, and neck from the inside of the duck, I took a big pot of water, sliced up an orange and put it in, and then added about 3 tbsp of honey. I brought the water to boiling, took the pot off the stove and into the sink, and dunked the duck in the hot water for 30 seconds. This step tightens up the skin.

 

Next I took 2 tbsp of five spice powder and 1 tbsp of kosher salt, mixed them up, and dumped it inside the cavity of the duck and rubbed it around.

 

I got Smaug stabilized at 375ºF. I had the heat deflector, drip pan, and main grate in place. During this time, I suspended the duck on a rack, patted it dry, and tried to get the skin as dry as possible. Once the grill was stabilized, the duck went on breast side up.

 

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The duck sat for about 1 hour and 15 minutes. At that point I checked the temperature, and found that I was above my target of 170º in the thigh. Rats.

 

The skin wasn’t quite crispy enough, so I opened up the vents to bump the temperature up to 400ºF, and let the duck go for another 10 minutes. Here’s the result.

 

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The skin on the breast side of the duck came out really nice. The meat was a bit overcooked, as you might expect from the temperatures I got. I was surprised as to how well the fat rendered out of the duck without pricking the skin. The skin on the back of the duck, which was placed down during cooking, was not crispy enough.

 

Next time, I’m going to keep a closer eye on the temperature of the duck. I plan for cooking at 350ºF, cranking up the temperature to 400ºF+ when I get to 160ºF until the thigh meat hits 170ºF. I think that the extreme efficiency of the KK 23†led to the duck cooking in less time than I anticipated.

 

Still, this turned out pretty well given that I didn’t pierce the skin, or do the long air drying step or blowing air under the skin that’s part of the traditional methods of cooking Peking Duck. I think the rotisserie will help with getting the skin on both sides of the duck nice and crispy.

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Nice first shot at the duck ol mate as it's usually a little more of a challange to get right.

 

You have been doing some good cooks !

 

 

I'm wanting to do duck as well and I have been thinking some sort of stainless frame that follows the contour of the closed lid,  with hooks so you can hang your Char Siu Pork, Peking Ducks ect,  true Asian style..

 

 

What do you think Dennis,,,

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Great looking duck, Wilburpan!

 

Looking for tips on how to blow air under the skin. I tried several techniques and nothing I've tried seemed to work very well. Can't seem to generate enough pressure to separate the skin from the meat.

 

Will be interested in how the rotisserie works out for you. I've done mine on vertical roasters (I don't have the roti for my KK).

 

Sav, not to bring up too many bad memories, but the old POSK did have a meat hanger option. I never got one, but had something similar made locally for doing South American Churasco. 

 

post-975-0-31893000-1415547440_thumb.jpg

 

post-975-0-49315600-1415547458_thumb.jpg

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Hey Wilbur!  That's once good looking plucked duck!  For a first time out, I'd say that you did pretty dadgummed good on this duck.  I've never done duck on a kamado before and learned a lot from your post.  I think I saw a lot of pin feathers on the before the roast pic.  Did you pull those or does the roasting take care of them?  I always spent way too much time plucking those little beasts with needle nose pliers.  That's why I switched to only cooking duck breasts.

 

All in all, Wilbur, that is one very nice looking duck!  Kudos!

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Great looking duck, Wilburpan!

 

Looking for tips on how to blow air under the skin. I tried several techniques and nothing I've tried seemed to work very well. Can't seem to generate enough pressure to separate the skin from the meat.

 

Will be interested in how the rotisserie works out for you. I've done mine on vertical roasters (I don't have the roti for my KK).

 

Sav, not to bring up too many bad memories, but the old POSK did have a meat hanger option. I never got one, but had something similar made locally for doing South American Churasco. 

 

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tonyb - That is one very intriguing rig for doing kabobs that I see.  Where did you get that vertical roaster?  How much if I may be so bold as to ask.  Thanks in advance, I appreciate it!

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It was custom made for me by the blacksmith shop down in the Amana Colonies. The skewers were an in-house basic item that I had them tweak by putting the hooks on the end. 

 

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For the life of me, I can't recall what I paid them, but it wasn't a lot. They did several custom jobs for me back then - my pot rack for my kitchen remodel and my grilling table. Both were riffs on things that they routinely made for the gift shop. I just had them customize stuff for me. I just remember how cheap the pot rack was compared to what I found in catalogs for similar ones. I seem to remember that the hooks were the most expensive part of the deal!!

 

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The table got tiled during the house remodeling by the same folks that did the tile work in the kitchen. The blacksmiths just made the frame and the hooks, towel rack, etc. 

 

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Hey Wilbur!  That's once good looking plucked duck!  For a first time out, I'd say that you did pretty dadgummed good on this duck.  I've never done duck on a kamado before and learned a lot from your post.  I think I saw a lot of pin feathers on the before the roast pic.  Did you pull those or does the roasting take care of them?  I always spent way too much time plucking those little beasts with needle nose pliers.  That's why I switched to only cooking duck breasts.

 

All in all, Wilbur, that is one very nice looking duck!  Kudos!

 

Thanks, Ken! I have to admit, this is not my first time cooking a whole duck. I’ve done that many times in an oven. This was the first time in a grill, though.

 

I never worried much about the pin feathers. If the skin gets done well, the pin feathers pretty much become part of the crispy skin. It’s sort of like eating soft-shell crabs.

 

(It occurs to me that my soft-shell crab comparison is going to be either awesome or really gross, depending on how you feel about soft-shell crabs. ^_^ )

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Great looking duck, Wilburpan!

 

Looking for tips on how to blow air under the skin. I tried several techniques and nothing I've tried seemed to work very well. Can't seem to generate enough pressure to separate the skin from the meat.

 

 

Thanks, Tony!

 

For this duck, I didn’t blow air under the skin, and the fat rendered out without any problem. The skin in the close up shot of the breast fell off as I was slicing the meat, so it was well separated. I also didn’t prick the skin, either.

 

The easiest way I’ve seen to blow air under the skin is to use an air compressor. The second easiest I’ve seen is to use your fingers to get underneath the skin to separate the skin from the meat.

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I'm wanting to do duck as well and I have been thinking some sort of stainless frame that follows the contour of the closed lid,  with hooks so you can hang your Char Siu Pork, Peking Ducks ect,  true Asian style..

 

 

What I’d really like is a rack like the one in this video: http://youtu.be/xp-kzew2Ewg?t=1m24s

 

I’m sure it would work well for chicken as well. It might be too small for a turkey.

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Wilburpan: The color on your duck is gorgeous!! And thanks for posting the video of the duck on the BGE. Very interesting.

 

Tony: What happened to the short handles on your upper/sear grill? Can you still cook on the short handles close to the flames with them bent in like that?

                                                                                                                                                                                  Susan

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tony - dadgummit all anyway.  I was hoping that I could buy one of those hangars. That is some beautiful iron work that was made for you!  tony, you should patent that thing.  It's the best looking cooker for kabobs, etc. that i've seen.  really a nice rig.  I'll find a metal worker and have him make a duplicate for me.  Where do I send the royalty check?   :happy3:

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tony - dadgummit all anyway.  I was hoping that I could buy one of those hangars. That is some beautiful iron work that was made for you!  tony, you should patent that thing.  It's the best looking cooker for kabobs, etc. that i've seen.  really a nice rig.  I'll find a metal worker and have him make a duplicate for me.  Where do I send the royalty check?   :happy3:

 

Thanks, CC. My gift to the KK community! 

 

Hope you can find someone locally to fab one for you. Here's a secret tip. Make a mock-up first to make sure that it fits. While mine was made for the old POSK, it still works on the KK - luckily. But, I have to remember to take out the dome thermometer, as it interferes with the rack, even on the lower grate. Bent the crap out of the thermometer the first time I used it on the KK when I closed the lid! Fortunately, it straightened out without breaking. 

 

Here's the other tip/trick - put a piece of potato on the end of the skewer, so the meats don't slide off as they cook (helps to put spuds in between too so all the meats don't slide down to the end (see pic above). Learned that one the hard way, too (LOL!)

 

Wilburpan: The color on your duck is gorgeous!! And thanks for posting the video of the duck on the BGE. Very interesting.

 

Tony: What happened to the short handles on your upper/sear grill? Can you still cook on the short handles close to the flames with them bent in like that?

                                                                                                                                                                                  Susan

 
Susan, it came that way. I've never had any issues flipping it over to use as a sear grate. 
 
post-975-0-59424300-1415646444_thumb.jpg

 

Thanks, Tony!

 

For this duck, I didn’t blow air under the skin, and the fat rendered out without any problem. The skin in the close up shot of the breast fell off as I was slicing the meat, so it was well separated. I also didn’t prick the skin, either.

 

The easiest way I’ve seen to blow air under the skin is to use an air compressor. The second easiest I’ve seen is to use your fingers to get underneath the skin to separate the skin from the meat.

 

 

Thanks for the tips, Wilburpan. Will just use the "manual" method next time. Done that many times to put herbed butter under the skin of chickens. Best part of that video, listening to the crunchy skin as he's slicing it off the bird!! I can just taste it - Killer!

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