- Wild Game
Ducks and Geese
When life gives you a roast duck or goose, or, even better, a smoked duck or goose, you could do a whole lot worse than make this clean, simple German soup. Riebele dumplings are a little like spaetzle, but are firmer and smaller.
Fall has finally hit, and I find myself in the Upper Midwest: wild rice country. It seems amazing that after all these years, I don’t have a recipe pairing wild rice and duck, which is a classic. Well, better late than never.
Lots of people made duck or goose “prosciutto” with the breast. But the real magic is in this Northern Italian ham made with the goose’s leg and thigh. Unlike the breast, this can hang for the better part of a year. Let it age that long and it tastes like eating silk.
This is my version of a dish I had at Perbacco in San Francisco a few weeks ago. It’s so simple, but is a great combination. And if you’ve never made homemade spaetzle, it’s easier than you think.
Thai red curry with duck is a standard dish in that country’s cuisine — in fact, it is thought that ducks were first domesticated in Southeast Asia, so this is about as core a duck recipe as you can get. And it’s mad crazy awesome.
Cappelletti, a variant on the well-known tortellini of Bologna, are normally served in a clear broth. My cappelletti are vegetarian, filled with ricotta and spices, but you could use meat, too. The soup is a rich, clear duck broth; almost a consomme. Simple yet, elegant.
I am kind of in love with this gravy. Maple and bourbon sing together like McCartney and Lennon, and in summer I love me my maple-bourbon BBQ sauce. But it’s winter, time for gravy. Paired with roast duck, it’s a winnah…
Diver ducks have a reputation as smelly, fishy tasting birds. Sometimes that’s true. But as I found out last week, even a clam-eating, saltwater duck can be magnificent at the table. Believe me, I am as shocked to write this as you are to hear it.
Behold the glory that is spickgans, a Pomeranian smoked goose breast that is at the pinnacle of German charcuterie. Goose, cured with juniper and black pepper and smoked over beech, oak or apple wood. The secret is in the shape, which makes it a delight to eat.
This is one of the easiest charcuterie projects you can undertake, and it has been one of my more popular recipes. But I’ve learned a lot about making duck prosciutto since I first started doing it in 2007, and there is definitely a difference between good duck ham and great duck ham.