4 portions. Maximum cost: £19.05,
Skill level: Super easy,
Total cooking time: 1 hour 40 mins,
- Prep time: 10 minutes,
- Cooking time: 1 hour 30 mins,
Equipment used: 1 roasting tray, kitchen towel,
Original recipe: Nigel Slater’s duck and citrus salad
“Nigel Slater bought a duck and had every intention of doing a roast duck dinner, but he’s just not in the mood for that now. Instead of roast potatoes and all the trimmings, he fancies a warm citrus salad.”
For more insight into the life and moods of Nigel, feel free to watch the episode clip here. If you just want the recipe, I’ve transcribed this below.
The duck will easily serve 4 + portions of salad, however if you are making for 2, or hold back a decent amount of meat, this (plus the carcass) can be used to create a sweet and sour soup (a la Nigel), which reduces the cost of the meat in this dish to £8.
The star of this dish is the crispy duck skin, make sure you add all of this to the salad, as it will be wasted boiled up to make stock.
(Original recipe in bold font)
The real key is crisp skin. With a nice sharp pronged fork, prick the bird all over and then pour boiling water over it. Immediately the skin will tighten. (Nigel places the bird directly in the sink before pricking and pouring)
Wet meat doesn’t roast well so dry it with kitchen paper. Generously dust with coarse sea salt (it may look like too much, but it will help crisp up the skin.
The duck will sit happily at 200 C for about an hour and a half. (The cooking instructions on my duck said to roast at 200 C for 40 mins per kg plus 10 minutes, which equates to an hour and a half for a 2kg bird)
When the time is up, take the meat from the oven and leave to rest in a clean dish.
You’ll notice that there is no instruction to baste the bird at any point during cooking – – I did do this on my second making of this dish and found that the skin did not go as crispy as desired (the layer of fat underneath remained soft) – This wasn’t a disaster, I simply popped the skin under a hot grill for a couple of minutes, however to get that crispy skin, avoid basting.
Whilst the duck rests, use the juices from the pan to make the dressing (If making gravy for roast duck, this would form the bases of the gravy, but even in a salad, this can be the heart and soul of the dish)
Pour off the excess fat from the roasting pan, you will be left with crusty things that have cooked themselves onto the surface of the pan – there is so much flavour here. Place the pan onto the hob (medium heat) and squeeze in the juice of 1 orange and 1 lemon. Add a generous drizzle of red wine vinegar and stir to bring all the flavours together.
Now for the salad itself. Don’t be nervous about putting fruit into a savoury salad, trust me, it’s worth trying. Peel and slice an orange and place in a dish. Add the meat from the duck, whilst it’s still hot, including the skin and finally add the pea shoots. (The only change I would make in future would be to hold back the skin and add this to the finished dish (without dressing) to keep it crispy)
Pour over the dressing, because it is still a bit warm, the shoots will wilt a bit. Give everything a quick toss and plate up.
This is so much easier than doing all the trimmings for a roast. It’s fresher, it’s lighter, it’s more modern, it’s delicious.
Even if you’re feeling super lazy, don’t throw that carcus away – simply add water and simmer gently for 2 hours for amazing duck stock
All prices from Sainsbury’s, March 2017, unless otherwise stated
- 1 whole duck (Gressingham, 2kg, £16 from Waitrose)
- 2 oranges (80p)
- 1 lemon (35p)
- 1 bag of pea shoots (£1) I also used lambs lettuce, 90p)
- red wine vinegar
View other Nigel Slater recipes
View other weekend recipes