The wild duck seems to have a reputation of being a meat that is too gamey and is almost always subjected to the standard “popper” wrapped in bacon and stuffed with jalapeno and cream cheese. Duck hunting has always been special to me, and this particular morning found me alone with my faithful hound, Mac, sitting on the bank of an old slough deep in the swamps. An hour after daylight, two mallards cupped and came straight in to my small spread. I raised my grandfather’s old pump 12 gauge, leaned from behind the large cypress tree and folded the drake as he chopped over the water. I then swung and folded the ‘Suzie’ as she attempted to escape. Mac made two perfect retrieves, and I was even rewarded with a little jewelry that the drake was wearing. This was the only action for the morning, but I now had a perfect dinner for my wife and me. After much research, I came up with a plan to cook these ducks. I wanted to pair the meat with a fruity flavor but not cover it so much that I would not enjoy the taste of my quarry. The following is how I prepared this dish in three different parts (sous vide duck, bok choy and blueberry sauce).
Sous Vide Duck:
- Cover the skinless, boneless breasts generously in olive oil.
- Coat heavily with kosher salt.
- Place the breasts in air tight bags and do not allow the separate breasts to touch (I typically do two per bag, one in each corner).
- Cook at 126 F in a sous vide for two hours.
- Remove from sous vide and pat the meat dry with paper towels.
- Place on a hot grill (500 F) and sear each side for 1530 seconds (until grill marks are made).
- Let the breasts rest for five minutes before carving.
- 3 bacon slices
- 6 shallots (sliced)
- ½ cup white mushrooms (sliced)
- 2 pounds bok choy (sliced)
- Cook the bacon in a big skillet. Remove and place on paper towels, leaving the drippings in the skillet.
- Add shallots and mushrooms and stir until soft. Remove and set aside.
- Add bok choy. Stir and cook until leaves wilt and stalk pieces are tender.
- Return bacon, shallots and mushrooms and mix all together. Turn off heat.
- 2 pints blueberries
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup apple juice
- 1 jalapeno pepper (chopped)
- ½ cup sugar
- Stir everything together in a pot.
- Bring to a boil.
- Reduce heat to low, and let simmer until it becomes like syrup.
- Now combine everything. Slice the sous vide duck breasts thinly across the grain. Place these atop a bed of bok choy and drizzle the blueberry sauce over the meat. Serve with a side of air-fryer-roasted potatoes seasoned with garlic, basil, thyme and rosemary. Accompany the dish with a stalk of rosemary for good looks.
Hope ya’ll enjoy this one! I know my wife and I have really liked this dish. It is best served with fresh, not frozen, duck breasts if available.