Whole Muscovy Ducks
Hens: Eight birds, 4-4.5lbs each (Approx. 32lbs total)
Whole ducks offer a wealth of culinary options. In addition to being roasted whole, they can also be cut into duck breasts and duck legs. Not only does this often save you money over buying pre-portioned duck breasts, but you get the carcass as well, which can be frozen for storage and later used to make delicious duck stock.
Muscovy ducks (aka Barbary ducks) are the most popular duck breed in Europe. They are the leanest of the commonly available domesticated duck breeds, with approximately 30% less fat. In fact, they can be lower in fat than turkey on a pound for pound basis.
Compared Pekin/Long Island ducks (the most commonly cooked breed in the US) Muscovy ducks are larger, with up to 50% more breast meat.
Three different options are available:
Muscovy Hens: Female Muscovy ducks are significantly smaller than males, weighing about 4 to 4 ½ pounds each. They are an excellent size for roasting. They are sold frozen with the heart, liver, gizzard and neck included.
Muscovy Drakes: Male Muscovy ducks are larger, averaging 7 ½ to 8lbs each. They are sold frozen with the heart, liver, gizzard and neck included.
Head & Feet On Muscovy Hens: Looking for a stunning presentation? These ducks can be roasted with the heads on for particularly impressive table service. They are sold fresh and are air-chilled for better flavor.
Besides having their heads and feet attached, the heart, liver, and gizzard are included (wrapped & packed into the bird’s cavity).
Note: Head & feet on birds are in limited supply and are subject to availability.
* No Artificial Ingredients, Minimally Processed.
Store whole frozen muscovy ducks in your freezer until you're ready to use them.
Fresh head & feet on Muscovy hens should be stored in your refrigerator for up to 11 days or frozen for long term storage.
RECIPES & TIPS
Whole ducks are wonderful roasted or cut into legs and breasts. Duck breasts are often pan roasted after their fat has been rendered out. Duck legs have a stronger flavor and can be roasted, braised, or made into duck confit.
Ingredients often used with duck include apples, ginger, Szechuan peppercorns, lemon juice, soy sauce, wild mushrooms, oranges, rich & fruity red wines, green onions, spicy chilies, honey, cilantro, star anise, thyme and berries. It can be served sweet, savory, tangy, smoked or spicy.
After cutting the meat off of the duck carcass, don't throw the bones away. They can be used to make delicious duck stock - duck stock recipe.
How to Render Duck Fat - for many duck breast recipes, the first step is rendering out the duck fat so that the meat is leaner and the skin crisps. Save the duck fat for use as a cooking fat (instead of oil or butter).
Head & Feet-on Ducks:
Chefs typically remove the feet before roasting and reserve them for stock production. The heads can be left on during the roast. Some chefs like to oil the head and/or season it with salt, sugar and/or spices on the inside.