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Wild duck advice

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buzd504
buzd504 Posts: 3,825
I am being gifted a few teal and several mallards, recently shot and cleaned (yesterday).

Looking online, the general consensus is S&P, brown the skin, roast around 450 to medium rare (135-140).  I'm familiar with cooking commercial duck, but never wild, which I am assuming will be much leaner.

Y'all have any advice or recipes to share?  Thoughts whether to smoke and how does the duck take it?
NOLA

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  • ColbyLang
    ColbyLang Posts: 3,496
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    Light smoke on the birds, no seasoning needed. Cool, debone. Make duck and andouille gumbo. You won’t be sorry 
  • Killit_and_Grillit
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    We eat a lot of wild game but IMO wild duck is marginal at best. That said, you got dabblers, not divers, so you’re in good shape there. 

    For people that don’t have a palate for wild game, I usually tell them start by cutting one breast up in cubes, marinate, and make ABTs. 

    Next step up would be gumbo like @ColbyLang suggested. Can’t go wrong with spicy and greasy. 

    But if you’re just feeling froggy about picking a whole bird and cooking it, your method above is a little hot but works fine. 

    "Brought to you by bourbon, bacon, and a series of questionable life decisions."

    South of Nashville, TN

  • buzd504
    buzd504 Posts: 3,825
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    ColbyLang said:
    Gumbo is definitely on the radar.
    NOLA
  • buzd504
    buzd504 Posts: 3,825
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    We eat a lot of wild game but IMO wild duck is marginal at best. That said, you got dabblers, not divers, so you’re in good shape there. 

    For people that don’t have a palate for wild game, I usually tell them start by cutting one breast up in cubes, marinate, and make ABTs. 

    Next step up would be gumbo like @ColbyLang suggested. Can’t go wrong with spicy and greasy. 

    But if you’re just feeling froggy about picking a whole bird and cooking it, your method above is a little hot but works fine. 

    Not squeamish about game at all.  I may try a spatch on one.  Thanks for the advice.
    NOLA
  • JethroVA
    JethroVA Posts: 1,251
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    @DuckDogDr will probably have a valid opinion.  The man carves his own duck decoys. I'd ping him...
    Richmond and Mathews County, VA. Large BGE, Weber gas, little Weber charcoal. Vintage ManGrates. Little reddish portable kamado that shall remain nameless here.  Very Extremely Stable Genius. 
  • SGH
    SGH Posts: 28,802
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    buzd504 said:
    Y'all have any advice or recipes to share?  
    Brother 504, I’m going to be the odd man out here, but I like “wild” duck fried. Cut that rascal up and fry it in about a heaping tablespoon (you don’t need much) of butter in a heavy iron skillet over medium heat to an internal temp of 130-135. 
    Just a few notes that you probably already know. Score the skin well. Chill the meat before frying. You want it cold when it hits the hot iron. Try to press (not beat) the pieces into uniform thickness for even frying. 
    I’m not a huge fan of wild duck. However, when fried in a little butter it becomes a delicacy. If I don’t fry it, I make gumbo (as others have already suggested) out of it. It’s great fried or in a gumbo. I don’t really care for it grilled, roasted or smoked. But that’s just me my friend. Whatever route you chose, good luck.  

    Location- Just "this side" of Biloxi, Ms.

    Status- Standing by.

    The greatest barrier against all wisdom, the stronghold against knowledge itself, is the single thought, in ones mind, that they already have it all figured out. 

  • SciAggie
    SciAggie Posts: 6,481
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    Teal is some good eats my friend. Personally I would grill them medium rare and enjoy. In my opinion Teal is the mildest flavored wild duck. 
    There are several options for the Mallards. My family enjoys duck meatballs. 
    https://stacylynharris.com/duck-meatballs/

    Whatever you decide I think wild ducks respond well to brining. I encourage you to do that. 
    Coleman, Texas
    Large BGE & Mini Max for the wok. A few old camp Dutch ovens and a wood fired oven. LSG 24” cabinet offset smoker. There are a few paella pans and a Patagonia cross in the barn. A curing chamber for bacterial transformation of meats...
    "Bourbon slushies. Sure you can cook on the BGE without them, but why would you?"
                                                                                                                          YukonRon
  • DuckDogDr
    DuckDogDr Posts: 1,549
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    @SciAggie and @SGH are both correct. 
    There's always the time proven classic of wrapping in bacon and cream cheese.

    Recently I have discovered that I like teal steamed in an aluminum foil bracket with mixture of Sprite and Italian dressing.  Seasoned with your favorite vegetables 
  • Mattman3969
    Mattman3969 Posts: 10,457
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    I’ve SV’d the breast with rosemary and butter and then into an ice bath to chill followed by a quick sear in the CI with Ghee 

    -----------------------------------------

    analyze adapt overcome

    2008 -Large BGE. 2013- Small BGE and 2015 - Mini. Henderson, Ky.
  • cottonseed
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    You want to clean out any shot or coagulated blood from each breast. Seeing as they're teal, this is highly likely. I always marinate/brine overnight.

    Use whatever youve got on hand. Italian dressing, dales, bourbon, beer, garlic, olive oil, whatever. 

    Take some thin sliced bacon and wrap each breast.

    Put em on the egg raised direct or with platesetter.

    cook em around 350-400 for 4 or 5 minutes on each side.

    less for more rare obviously. 

    some slide fresh slices on jalapeno in between the bacon and duck. Some add cream cheese.

    For puddlers like youve got I would not do a gumbo. Those species are the prize of the field. Aside from maybe Canvasback.  

    I like to make gumbo with diving ducks. 


    Atlanta, GA
    Large Egg ~1998 model
  • buzd504
    buzd504 Posts: 3,825
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    I cooked two Sunday night.  Spatched them and S&P.  Scored the skin then cooked skin side down until nicely browned, then put in the oven on top of some carrots and celery and lemon until 135 or so.  Came out great.
    NOLA
  • saluki2007
    saluki2007 Posts: 6,354
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    This is for a farm duck, but I've only used it for wild and it works great.
    http://www.thehungrymouse.com/2009/02/11/the-best-way-to-roast-a-duck-hello-crispy-skin/#chitika_close_button
    Large and Small BGE
    Central, IL

  • northGAcock
    northGAcock Posts: 15,166
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    Not a fan of the duck. That said, save me some for the sauce.
    Ellijay GA with a Medium & MiniMax

    Well, I married me a wife, she's been trouble all my life,
    Run me out in the cold rain and snow