Cleaning/gutting whole duck

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Cleaning/gutting whole duck

Postby badhat » Thu Nov 16, 2006 9:26 pm

:help: I've been raising domestic ducks on my property for three years. This year, I would like to roast one particularly aggressive drake for Thanksgiving. I'm hoping some experienced hunters would share methods for plucking and gutting the whole duck (breasting seems a waste with my large breed ducks).

What is your preferred method for removing feathers: wax, hot water, skinning, dry plucking, scorching? How do you prevent the skin from tearing when you pluck?

Do I need to bleed him? What about gutting--Is there an oil gland I need to remove? Can I pull the gizzard out with the other organs if I cut him from vent to sternum? Is there anything else I need to remove? Where/how do I cut the neck?

Thanks in advance for your advice.
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Postby duckjumper » Mon Nov 20, 2006 2:59 pm

1. Dry pluck large feathers, leaving down.
2. Cut off ends of wings (wings have three joints; cut off the last one)
3. Hold the neck and dip bird in hot water (NOT boiling) that has a block of paraffin wax melted in it (available in the canniing section of most grocery stores) Dip twice.
4. Drop duck into a bucket of COLD water to let the wax set. Skip this if it is very cold out.
5. Once wax is set, pry it off. The feathers will come with it. In loose skin areas, hold down the skin wth one hand while you are pulling with the other.
6. Chop off head. Chop off neck where it meets the body. Save neck for stock.
7. Cut around the legs just above the "knee," bend the knee back and wriggle it around. Holding the drumstick end very tightly at the bone, pull the feet off with the idea that you're taking tendons with it. Not all will come, but that's OK.
8. With a cleaver or large knife, cut the tail off above the ass. You won't cut the gizzard.
9. Reach inside and grab everything out. Save liver and heart, they're yummy!
10. Clean inside of bird with cold water, scraping out the lungs, which are bright red and will be attached to the backbone. Dry the bird off.
11. Eat and enjoy. Remember: DO NOT OVERCOOK! Ducks want to be eaten rare-to-medium.

This help?

d.j.
I love all of God's creatures, properly prepared.
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Postby badhat » Sat Nov 25, 2006 6:10 pm

Thanks, duckjumper!

The duck was surprisingly easy to pluck/clean. Not as gruesome as I'd expected. In fact, killing him was the worst part (and I wasn't fond of him at all). He was a big, tough drake and it took him forever to bleed out after I cut his throat. Thankfully, my father showed me how to wring the neck for future reference.

My blue swedish are rather large (around 7 lbs) so it was plenty of meat. Unfortunately, I expected him to be greasy, since he was domestic, so I roasted him without any extra marinades or fats. Kinda dry. At least I didn't skin him. Apparently free-range domestic ducks are less fatty than pen-raised. In the future, I will probably soak in milk and roast with bacon.
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Postby duckjumper » Sun Nov 26, 2006 5:03 pm

Dry?! Did you cook him past medium-rare? I am surprised. I roast all my wild birds without extra fat, and they are juicy and wonderful. I split the bird at the backbone (by cutting it out and flattening the bird a bit) then roast at 400-425 degrees for 15-18 minutes total (less for teal) Flip once. Hope that helps,

d.j.
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Postby Troutslayer » Tue Dec 12, 2006 7:59 pm

In fact, killing him was the worst part


That's my favorite part.
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Postby KS_PuddleJumper » Tue Dec 12, 2006 10:36 pm

LOL ... Well, played, Trout...
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