Besaid Smoked Duck

Besaid“Besaid Village.”

“They got any food there?”

–Wakka and Tidus, FFX

For the paste:

  • 6 shallots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 head of garlic (about 8-12 cloves), peeled and chopped
  • 6 red Thai chiles, chopped
  • 6 macadamia nuts, chopped
  • 8″ fresh lemongrass stalk, outer leaves removed and center chopped
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger (about 3 square inches)
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh turmeric (about 1 square inch)
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • ½ tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ cup fresh lime juice
  • ¼ cup peanut oil

For the duck:

  • 10 oz. chopped kale
  • 1 whole duck, about 4 lbs.
  • Steamed white rice (optional)

Combine the paste ingredients in a food processor or blender and pulse until combined. In a large bowl, mix half the paste with the kale. Set aside.

Prepare a grill for indirect medium heat (about 300 degrees), with a pan of water under the area where the duck will be cooking.

Wash the duck inside and out with cold water and drain, cavity side down, for 2 minutes. Trim off excess skin. Pat dry with paper towels and place breast-side up on a rack in a roasting pan.

Using a sharp knife, cut a criss-cross pattern over the breast, being careful to cut through most of the fat without cutting into the meat. Prick all over the rest of the skin with a sharp knife, being careful not to cut all the way through to the meat. Rub duck with the remaining paste.

Stuff as much kale into the duck as possible and truss the legs. Refrigerate the remaining kale.

Move roasting pan to the grill, and cook, covered, for about 1 hour. Prick all over with a knife, turn to breast-side down, cover, and cook for 1 hour. Prick all over, turn to breast-side up, cover, and cook for 1 hour.

You should now be at a total of about 3 hours cook time. Check the internal temperature of the duck. Continue cooking until it reaches 165 degrees.

Increase the grill temperature to 400 degrees (or transfer to pre-heated 400 degree oven) and continue cooking for an additional 15-20 minutes, until the skin is golden-brown and crispy.

Remove the duck from the grill, transfer to a carving board, and let rest, about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, remove the remaining kale from the refrigerator and sauté in a large saucepan, covered, for about 10 minutes, until tender.

Remove the kale stuffing from inside the duck and discard. Pour off the liquid from the roasting pan into a large measuring cup and refrigerate. (You can use the duck fat later to make french fries and other delicious things!)

Carve the duck and transfer to a serving platter. Serve with the sautéed kale and steamed rice.

Serves 2 people.