It is on like Donkey Kong! A rematch of last year’s “Iron Chef Duck” cooking competition between Chef Michael Tuohy of Grange restaurant and myself. And this year there are several new twists.
For those of you who remember last year’s competition, while I did lose by a whisker (damn Chef Tuohy’s warm duck rillette!) I had the time of my life. Well, the good people at the Citizen Hotel and Grange called me to say they wanted to do a duck duel redux. But of course I said “oui!”
This year there will be no separate competition held in the afternoon. Nope, this time we’re laying everything on your table — each course of the dinner will be a series of duos, each representing how Chef Tuohy and I would interpret the same basic dish. Which dishes? Ah, well that’s the secret, isn’t it?
You get to be the judge. We’re planning on having cards on each table for you to fill out which of the two dishes on each plate you liked best, then we tally up the scores and announce a winner. I think the management said the winner gets $100,000, but I might have misheard that one…
The dinner, which will be a fixed-price, set menu, will start at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, November 11. Exactly how many courses (we’re leaning toward four) and how much (somewhere around $50) remains to be worked out.
If $50 sounds steep, keep in mind there will be at least four courses and that 10 percent of the proceeds will go to help the California Waterfowl Association buy, restore and maintain wetlands all over the state. So it’s for a good cause!
Cost will be of no object to two of you, however: Dinner for two will be free — and I’ll even kick in a free hotel room at the Citizen Hotel, where Grange is located. If you’ve never seen it, The Citizen is pretty damn swanky. The management gave me a free night at the hotel as a gift for last year’s competition, but I’ve decided to give it to the winner so that people who live outside the Sacramento area can enter.
I know, I know, get on with it. You want to know how to win the free dinner and hotel room, right? It’s simple:
I want your best duck or goose recipe.
That’s it. If you are a blogger and have posted the recipe on your site, describe it, tell me why it’s so good, and send me a link. If you are not a blogger, write the recipe down in the comments section.
Wait. I hear some of you saying, “But Hank, I’m an eater, not a cook!” Fair enough. If you really don’t have a good duck or goose recipe, tell me (in the comments section) in 100 words or less, why I should pick you as the winner. Whoever convinces me gets dinner for two, but, alas, no free hotel room — they’re only allowing me to give away one of those.
Deadline? Well, while it’s unlikely, there is a definite possibility someone might jump on a plane to come out here, especially because of the free lodging. That’s why I’m setting the deadline for this contest at October 27. I will announce the winner on October 28, which gives you two weeks to book a flight, get a pet sitter, toss the crumb-snatchers in the closet, whatever.
So, to sum up, the best duck or goose recipe gets dinner for two and the night at The Citizen Hotel. I will also be giving away dinner for two to the best story about why I should choose you. (Remember, 100 words or less.)
Either way, you can make a reservation for the Duck Duel Deux here.
Good luck to you — and wish me luck, too! Chef Tuohy is the real deal, and I’ll be cooking in his house.