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Traditional Roast Mallard

Preheat oven to gas 7, 220C, 425F Put a nut of seasoned butter inside the bird and rub the outside lightly with butter and salt and pepper. Put in a roasting tin breast side down and roast for 35-40 minutes; after 20 minutes turn it breast up. Put the bird on a warm dish, cover loosely with foil and leave to rest for 10 minutes. Pour off excess fat from the roasting tin and add 200ml stock, reduce slightly and thicken with slaked cornflour. A dash of brandy, port or lemon juice will improve the flavour.

One mallard serves two people; mashed potato is better served with it than roast potatoes.

Roast Teal

Cook as for mallard but turn after 10 minutes and remove from oven after 20-25 minutes.


Classic Orange Sauce for Wild Duck

1 large orange

300ml good stock

1 tbspn wine vinegar

1 tbspn cornflour

1 tbspn gran sugar

brandy/port/cointreau/lemon juice

Dissolve sugar in vinegar and boil hard until it turns the colour of mahogany. Remove from the heat and carefully add the stock - it will spit fiercely. Bring to the boil and thicken with slaked cornflour. Set aside. Peel the orange removing all the pith and cut into segments. While your mallard or teal is resting, pour off excess fat from the roasting tin and add the sauce. Bring to the boil, add port/brandy/cointreau/lemon juice to taste and check the seasoning. Add orange segments just before serving.

Confit of Mallard Legs

8 Mallard legs

1 bay leaf

50g sea salt

1 clove garlic

1 tbspn crushed black pepper

800ml goose fat or sunflower oil

1 sprig thyme


Mix salt, herbs and spices together and rub well into duck legs. Cover and leave to marinate for 24 hour. Wipe spices off legs and dry with kitchen paper. Heat oil; add legs and maintain below simmering point for approx 1½ hours until meat is very tender. Remove legs; They will keep for some time in the fridge. Heat them in a frying pan over medium heat, skin side down for approx 5 minutes until hot through and the skin is crispy. Eat with your favourite chutney and a crisp salad.

Mallard Breast with Root Vegetables

4 mallard breasts

50g butter

¼ swede diced

150ml red wine

2 carrots diced

150ml port

¼ celeriac diced

150ml good stock

1 tbspn sunflower oil

1 tbspn cornflour


Put wine and port in pan bring to the boil and reduce to a third. Add stock and reduce by half. Set aside. Melt butter and add vegetables; fry gently for 5 minutes; season lightly add a little water. Cover and cook gently until vegetables are soft. Heat frying pan, add oil. Season breast lightly and put in pan skin side up; cook for 2 minutes. Turn breasts and cook for 5-10 minutes until skin is crispy. Remove from heat, cover loosely and leave to stand for 10 minutes. Reheat sauce and thicken with cornflour. Slice each breast in three and serve with the vegetables; pour the sauce over.

Whisky, Soy and Honey Sauce for Mallard Breasts

600ml good stock

1 tbspn light soy sauce

2 tbspns whisky

2 tspns lemon juice

1 tbspn honey

1 tbspn cornflour


Boil stock until reduced to 120ml. Add whisky, honey, soy sauce and lemon juice; thicken with slaked cornflour and season. Serve with breasts fried as above.

Wild Duck in Tomato and Orange Sauce

For 6

2 Mallard

1 onion quartered

1 carrot quartered

1 bouquet garni

50g butter

2 onion thinly sliced

1 tbspn tomato puree

50g plain flour

150ml orange juice

2 oranges peeled and sliced

1 dspn red currant jelly

1 dspn wine vinegar

Preheat oven to gas 4,180C, 350F. Put ducks in roasting tin with quartered onion, carrot and bouquet garni; half fill tin with water. Cover tightly with foil and cook in oven for 1 hour.

When ducks are cooked remove; strain stock from roasting tin and save.