Canard à l'orange is a French classic, although it is not something us Frenchies (or half) have everyday! This is probably the third time I am having it - ever. It is also my first time cooking it. For a first time I thought I needed a little help, so I grabbed the phone and called my mamie (french grandmother) for advice. Guess what? She gave me her mother's recipe! So here goes, my great grandmother's recipe for un canard à l'orange :
- a whole duck
- a glass of white wine
- 5 oranges (preferably organic - you will be using the zest)
- 1 cup of stock
- 1 duck liver (or chicken liver)
- 1 tablespoon of flour
- 4 tablespoons of Cognac
- Salt and pepper to season.
Turn on your oven at 200º C. Stuff your duck with one orange cut into four big chunks, salt and pepper. Place in a baking tray and roast for 1 and a half hour (depending on your oven) or until golden, crispy and cooked! Half way through pour your glass of white wine around the duck (it will add flavour and moist).
With a vegetable peeler, remove just the orange rind – no pith, just in strips. Cut into a fine julienne. Place in a pan of boiling water for 3 minutes to get rid of the bitterness. Set aside.
Peel 2 oranges, and cut it in segments, making sure you take the white skins off. Set aside.
When the duck is cooked, transfer all the yummy juices from your tray to a saucepan. Over medium heat cook your duck/chicken liver in the duck juices, adding your cup of stock and the juice of 1 orange.
Once your liver is cooked, blend it in with your electric blender. Still on medium heat, add your flour (preferably mixed beforehand with a little bit of water so it forms a sort of paste), mix well until it thickens, add your Cognac, and the juice of one more orange if you feel like the sauce is too thick.
At the last minute add your orange segments to your sauce, followed by your orange rind.
On the plate, poor the sauce over your pieces of duck. Serve with a 'gratin dauphinois' and some green beans.
Bon appétit !!
Ps: I apologise for this very bad picture - it was taken in a rush with my phone.
Pps: I translated this recipe from a few french scribbles I wrote while on the phone with mamie, let me know if anything is unclear!!