Roast Duck (Serves 4 - 6)
Copyright 2004, Barefoot in Paris by Ina Garten, Clarkson/Potter Publishers, All Rights Reserved
Photo: Quentin Bacon
2 ducks (5 to 6 pounds each), innards and wing tips removed
6 quarts canned chicken broth
Freshly ground black pepper
Allow the ducks to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes. With a fork, prick the skin all over, especially the legs, without piercing the meat, which will allow the fat to drain off while the ducks cook.
Meanwhile, in a stockpot large enough to hold two ducks, heat the chicken broth with 1 tablespoon of salt until it boils. Add the ducks very carefully and bring the broth back to a boil. If there isn’t enough broth to cover the ducks, add the hottest tap water to cover. Place a plate on top of the ducks to keep them submerged. When the broth comes back to a boil, lower the heat and simmer the ducks for 45 minutes.
Skim off enough duck fat from the top of the stock to pour a film on the bottom of a large roasting pan. This will keep the ducks from sticking while they roast. Carefully take the ducks out of the stock, holding them over the pot to drain. Place them in the roasting pan, pat the skin dry with paper towels, and sprinkle each with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 500 degrees. (Be sure your oven is very clean or it will smoke!) Roast the ducks for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow them to rest, covered with aluminum foil, for 20 minutes. Serve warm.