People who say they couldn’t live without bacon lack imagination.
We get it- smoked meat is damn good, and smoked, fatty meat is even better. But smoked, fatty duck meat can’t be beat.
We like to smoke the legs and the breasts together- it makes a beautiful presentation. Cut the breast down the sternum and extend the cut to include the thigh, pop the joint at the pelvis and cut down the backbone. Save the wings for another dish. After that, simply brine, smoke and serve.
This pairs perfectly with wilted greens and roasted, salty potatoes. Or do like we do most of the time, and eat it right off the cutting board, standing up.
Simple Smoked Duck
Prep time: 20 minutes active, 26 hours inactive
1 duck, split, or two duck breasts
1 cup warm water
3 cups ice water
¼ cup salt
⅛ cup sugar
1 tsp instacure #1
1 tbsp black peppercorns, whole
1 bay leaf
1 tsp red pepper flake
1 tsp juniper, whole
Heat 1 cup of the water and completely dissolve salt, sugar, and instacure. Add peppercorns, bay leaf, red pepper flake, and juniper. Add the ice water and stir. You want the brine to be cold (under 40 degrees F) for food safety purposes.
Submerge duck in cold brine and allow to sit for around 24 hours. Remove from the brine and allow it to drain.
Cook in smoker at 200-250 degrees for 1-2 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches 140 degrees.
Pull from smoker and allow to cool enough to handle. Slice on the bias.