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Duck In The Style Of The Vineyard Owner's Wife


  • One 5 pound duck
  • 8 ounces chopped carrots and onions
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 pounds grapes, the larger the better
  • Juice of a lemon
  • Salt and pepper
  • Strong duck giblet stock, or meat glaze
  • 2 ounces butter, diced


  • Prick the duck with a fork in several places. Then roast in a hot oven (425 degrees) for 45 minutes. As soon as the fat begins to run into the roasting pan, remove 2 tablespoons to a deep enamel casserole and brown the carrots and onions lightly. Stir in the sugar and continue cooking until the vegetables caramelize slightly-but don't let them burn.
  • Take the duck from the oven and place it on the vegetables. Turn the oven down to 350 degrees. Tuck two-thirds of the grapes round the duck, squashing them down a little. Add lemon, salt and plenty of pepper. Pour in 1/2 cup stock or 3 tablespoons meat glaze. Cover and put the casserole into the oven. Cook for 3/4 to 1 1/4 hours longer, according to how well done you like your duck.
  • Peel, half, and seed the rest of the grapes. When the duck is ready, transfer it to warm serving dish. Strain the cooking juices into a small saucepan, pressing through a little of the pulp to give the juices body, but not enough to make them too grainy. Taste and reduce by hard-boiling if necessary. Skim well when sauce is boiling. Off the heat, whisk in the butter and add the grape halves. Heat though without coming near boiling point. Pour the sauce round the duck. Serve with a few small new potatoes, no other vegetable.