Roast Duck with Red Cabbage and Potato Dumplings
My mouth is salivating just thinking about this. You will make grandma proud.
WHAT YOU NEED
For the duck (5.5 hours total):
1 duck, fresh or thawed with giblets and neck removed
Salt and pepper
For the dumplings (1 hour):
750 g Russet potatoes
275 g all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
For the cabbage (1 hour):
1 head of fresh red cabbage
1 small onion
¼ cup of water
2.5 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (white distilled vinegar will work here as well)
4 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
HOW TO DO IT
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
Pat the duck dry with paper towels and season liberally with salt and pepper. If you’re using caraway seeds, add them as well.
Place the seasoned duck breast side down in the Dutch oven, cover with the lid, and place in the preheated oven.
Immediately turn the oven temperature down to 215 degrees and roast for 2.5 hours.
After the 2.5 hours, remove from the oven, turn the duck breast side up, put the lid back on, and place for additional 2.5 hours.
Next, peel the potatoes and cut in half. Boil them in salted water until a knife slides in the potato with minimal resistance. Drain the potatoes and let them cool until you can handle them.
When the potatoes cooled down slightly, grate them using a the small side of a standard box grater. If you are fancy (I am jealous!), use a food mill or a ricer to fluff the potatoes. Let cool completely.
Once the potatoes are cooled, add flour, salt, and egg and form into a dough. If it’s too sticky, add a bit more flour.
Turn the dough out on a floured surface, roll into a snake (about 1.5” in diameter) and cut into bite sized pieces.
Place in boiling salted water (be sure to not overcrowd the pan, I cooked mine in 3 batches) and wait for them to float – this will take 2-3 minutes. Place in a bowl and set aside.
After 4 hours and 30 minutes of roasting, remove the lid from the Dutch oven, and our all of the liquid into a fat separator or another container. Brush some of the fat over the duck (still breast side up) and return to the oven WITHOUT the lid.
Heat up a tablespoon of the reserved duck fat in a large pot and dice the onion.
Slice the cabbage by either cutting it into thin strips with a sharp knife or using a food processor. I used my food processor for this.
Once the fat is heated, add the onion and saute until translucent. Add the sliced cabbage. Be warned – it will fill up the pot but don’t worry, it will cook down.
Add the water, sugar, salt, and vinegar, stir well, cover with a lid, and cook on medium-low heat for about 30 minutes or until the cabbage is soft.
As the cabbage is cooking, turn the oven to 400 degrees for the final crisp on the skin of the duck.
Heat a little bit of the duck fat in a skillet and fry the potato dumplings to give them a beautiful crunchy exterior.
Check the cabbage – it should taste sweet and sour and should not be too watery. Cook it without the lid to evaporate some of the water or add a tablespoon of flour to thicken it slightly. Cook for additional 5 minutes and you are ready to serve.
When the skin on the duck is beautifully golden brown, remove it from the oven and place on a cutting board.
Carve it up any way you like, and serve with the dumplings and cabbage.
This recipe is THE quintessential Sunday lunch meal in the Czech Republic. Since I started my blog, I haven’t made any recipes that are directly from my home country. The first one I am going to introduce to you is Czech Roast Duck. Absolutely delicious, surprisingly simple, and most importantly is part of the Czech culture. Every single person in the Czech Republic knows what a roast duck is and there are varying opinions about the best way to eat it. White cabbage or red cabbage? Potato dumplings or bread dumplings? Roast whole or portion it out before roasting? Trust me, people in the Czech Republic know their roast duck and they know how they like it. I am going to show you what I believe is the simples version of it. But take me for no fool – just because this is not as complicated does not mean it is not equally as delicious. The mouth-watering duck is roasted low and slow for hours to ensure perfectly tender meat and plenty of duck fat to store for later. The potato dumplings provide the perfect complement to the duck with their crispy outside and fluffy soft inside. And the whole dish is tied with sweet and sour red cabbage, just like grandma does it. My mouth is salivating just writing this!
*Disclaimer: traditionally, the duck is seasoned only with salt and whole caraway seeds. My wife does not like caraway seeds, so I am omitting them from this recipe. However, feel free to add them to your version because they provide beautiful aroma and flavor.