Roast ducks with plum glaze
Serves 6 with leftovers
2 whole ducks (about 5 pounds each)
1 orange, halved
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 jar (13 ounces) plum preserves
Juice of 1 orange
1/4 cup rice wine
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1. Set the oven at 350 degrees. Have on hand a rimmed baking sheet with a metal rack resting inside.
2. Remove excess skin from the neck and body cavity of the duck. Place half an orange inside each duck. With butcher’s twine, tie the feet together to close the body cavity. Tie one string around the breast so the wings stay close to the breast. With the tip of a small paring knife, prick holes all over the skin, so it releases fat during roasting.
3. Place the ducks on the rack and sprinkle them with salt and pepper. Roast for 1 hour and 30 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine plum preserves, orange juice, rice wine, soy sauce, and vinegar. Stir well. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 15 minutes. Leave to cool slightly. In a blender, puree the glaze until smooth.
5. Remove ducks from the oven, but leave the oven on. Drain fat from the bottom of the pan. Snip off and discard the trussing strings. Brush each duck with glaze. Return to the oven, and roast for 10 minutes. Repeat glazing 2 times for a total of 30 minutes additional roasting time.
6. Turn the oven up to 400 degrees. Brush the ducks with glaze, and roast for 10 minutes. Total roasting time is 2 hours and 10 minutes. A thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the leg should read 165 degrees.
7. Let the ducks rest for 10 minutes. Carve the ducks, serving each person either a leg or a breast. Reserve the meat from 1 leg-thigh quarter and 1 breast for the stir-fry. Serve with bok choy. Karoline Boehm Goodnick