Faced with the question of “what are the top kitchen appliances you
would bring to an island”, I can tell you I include “slow cooker” on my
This week’s culinary challenge was to prepare a reasonable Thanksgiving
dinner in a kitchen that has virtually no staples (can’t reasonably
keep liquids between visits — they’ll freeze) and an incomplete
battery of kitchen tools. Oh, and it’s in a part of the world not
celebrating Thanksgiving this week.
I came away from the grocery store on Tuesday without turkey, but
rather a frozen duck, and incomplete thoughts about what to do with it
(mindful of all the fat that can make the duck experience less than
stellar). The slow cooker seemed like a good
way to cook it, as I don’t especially care about the skin being crispy,
and I figured that would be a nice moist cooking of the duck. I
found a recipe
for “Imperial Duckling” on the net, and decided to follow it,
loosely. (I couldn’t get my hands on currant jelly; I had no
tarragon; I backed away from the orange, somewhat).
In the meantime, I started thinking about braised cabbage. I have
a family traditional recipe for braised cabbage with partridges.
Rather than browning the cabbage in bacon fat, maybe I could put the
duck fat to good use?
In the end, the long and the short of it is that I slow-cooked the
duck, and threw in cabbage & onion partway through the
cooking. There was much draining of fat along the way — as
someone observed, ducks are mostly fat and bone, with not much meat in
Some pictures of the dinner…
Note the more-than-one cup of fat siphoned off the duck during cooking:
Duck on a bed of cabbage — closeup:
Remains after serving 2 portions (i.e., lots of bones, a little bit of
Dessert — I had no real ingredients to work with, and did not want
leftovers we could not use past Sunday. So, I went with a box:
And, I have to say, they were Very Tasty!
And, oh yeah, the duck actually tasted quite good — overall, the slow
cooker experiment rates as a success!