When my mum offered me a frozen duck to take home when I visited recently she didn’t have to ask twice. It was a wild duck, shot by my brother on one of his expeditions. Now, I am not The Pioneer Woman (although obviously, secretly, I often wish I was) and I have never shot anything myself apart from paper targets and clay pigeons…
But I’d never eaten wild duck so I was excited. When I got home I looked up ALL the duck recipes in the Silver Screen Suppers spreadsheet and there were a surprising amount to choose from. Quite a few involved the classic combination of duck with orange, one was with pineapple, but Mr R (like my chum Heather) is not keen on the addition of fruit to meat. That’s an excuse to post a picture of one of my favourite non-film-star things to eat (I’ve only had it once mind…) Heston’s Meat Fruit.
Corinne’s recipe sounded good as it involved a cup of brandy and a cup of wine so we decided to go for that. It was utterly delicious! A cup of brandy is quite an expensive thing to chuck over a duck, but the resulting boozy gravy you can make with the liquid left after roasting is well worth it.
And what makes this a Mexican Duck? Purely and simply because Corinne was given this recipe in Mexico after eating this in a little restaurant in Ensenada. I love the way Corinne writes about the night she had this dish after a fifty-two hour voyage on her boat The Wanderlust. It sounds like one of those meals you remember forever and Corinne writes of her request to the proprietor of the restaurant:
“Over the meal and the coffee, we lingered long. I asked for the recipe for the wild duck – my first collected recipe! It was delivered to me with a flourish, by candlelight, amid a most generous atmosphere of hospitality. ‘You should collect recipes wherever you go!’suggested Senor Martinez, enthusiastically.”
And this is just what she did, resulting in one of my favourite movie star cookbooks: Eggs I Have Known. Put this on your Christmas list – it’s ace.
I think this duck would be lovely to have for Christmas dinner if you don’t fancy turkey this year. My column for Eatdrinkfilms this month is all about Corinne and her recipe for Christmas Pudding so you could do the two together for a real star spangled Xmas! Here is the link… Her pudding is lovely, a light and fluffy steamed pudding, not heavy like the trad Xmas pudding. Anyhow, without further ado, here’s Corinne’s recipe for the duck.
Corinne Griffith’s Wild Mexican Duck
1 duck [the one we had at Silver Screen Suppers Towers was a mallard from good old Essex]
1 cup brandy
1 cup red wine
2 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons butter
Scrub, clean and rub inside of duck with lemon. Sprinkle a pinch of pepper and salt inside. Place garlic cloves inside duck. Lay duck on baking platter. Heat brandy, pour over duck and set aflame. Smear butter over breast. Salt and pepper. Pour red wine over and place in pre-heated 400 degree [200 degree C] oven for 20 minutes. Turn and baste with red wine. Cook your duck 25 minutes if you wish it rare, turning once and basting frequently. We cook our ducks 45 minutes, turning twice.