Recipes: 01.18.18

Seasons by the Sea: Wild Things at Your Door
Black ducks may not be to everyone’s liking, but A.J. Liebling, the writer and gourmand who for many years had a house in Springs, considered them among the finest game birds for the table. David E. Rattray

Marinated Wild Duck

This recipe is adapted from “Eat Like a Wild Man: The Ultimate Game and Fish Cookbook,” sub-subtitled “110 Years of Sports Afield Recipes.”

Serves four. 


2 wild ducks (about 2 1/2 pounds each) cleaned, rinsed, and cut into 6 pieces each

Salt and pepper to taste



1/2 cup good brandy

2 onions, chopped

1 1/2 cups red wine

1/2 tsp. allspice

2 sprigs fresh thyme

1 tsp. dried thyme

1 bay leaf, broken in pieces




3 Tbsp. butter

4 Tbsp. olive oil

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 cups mushrooms, thickly sliced

1 large carrot, chopped

1/4 cup beef stock

2 Tbsp. parsley, chopped


Sprinkle the duck pieces with salt and pepper. Combine all the marinade ingredients in large, deep pan. Place meat in pan and turn for a few minutes. Refrigerate meat for eight hours, turning it occasionally. Remove meat from pan, strain the marinade and reserve it.

Heat butter and olive oil in large saute pan, preferably cast iron, over medium-high heat. Brown each piece of duck until it’s golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove meat from pan and set it aside.

Add garlic, mushrooms, and carrots to butter and oil mixture. Then add three cups of strained marinade and the beef stock. Cook over medium heat until it starts to boil. Add duck pieces, cover pan, and cook slowly for one hour, or until the meat is tender. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve with the sauce from the pan.

Roast Saddle of Venison With Jus 

This recipe is from James Peterson’s “Meat: A Kitchen Education.”

Serves four to six. 


1 untrimmed saddle of venison (including flaps) about 10 lbs.

Salt and pepper

1/2 onion

2 cups chicken broth


Let saddle come to room temperature. Preheat oven to 450.

Working carefully to avoid damaging the loin muscle, cut the flaps off the saddle. Cut the flaps into strips about half an inch wide. There will probably be no more than a thin layer of fat covering the meat. If there is more, trim the excess fat. Season the saddle all over with salt and pepper. Spread the flap strips and onion in a roasting pan just large enough to accommodate the saddle. Place the saddle, fat side up, on top.

Slide the pan into the oven and roast for about 25 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer reads 125 degrees or the meat feels firm when you press both ends of the saddle. Check the tenderloins on the bottom by pressing to see if they are firm. If not, turn the saddle over and roast for a few minutes longer. Transfer to a platter, tent loosely with foil, and let rest 15 minutes before carving.

While saddle is resting, make the jus. Put roasting pan on stove over high heat and stir around the pieces of meat until the meat is browned and any juices caramelize on the bottom of the pan. Spoon out any fat. Deglaze the pan with half a cup of the broth, scraping up any brown bits. Boil down the broth until it caramelizes into a crusty layer with a layer of clear fat on top. Spoon out and discard the fat, and deglaze the pan with a second half cup of broth. Boil it down again, then deglaze with remaining cup of broth, and then strain liquid through a fine mesh strainer and transfer to warmed gravy boat.

To carve the roast lengthwise, cut along one side of the backbone to free the loin muscle. Slice the loin lengthwise with the knife held sideways. Repeat with other loin muscle. Turn saddle over and carve the tenderloins the same way. Alternatively, cut the loins and tenderloins away from the chine bone and slice crosswise. Pass the jus at the table.


Wild Canada Goose Breast

This is Mark Borucke’s recipe, which he serves as an appetizer.

Sufficient for two to four breasts.



1/4 cup each soy sauce, port, and honey

2-3 Tbsp. chopped garlic

2 tsp. chopped ginger

Salt and pepper


Cover breasts with marinade and marinate for 24 hours, turning occasionally.

Grill breasts over high heat six to seven minutes per side. You want them to be medium rare. Cool.

Slice very thin, lay out on platter, and grind some fresh black pepper over all. Serve with dipping sauce and spiced pecans.


Horseradish Sauce

1/2 cup mayonnaise 

2 heaping Tbsp. horseradish (or more to taste)

3 good shots of Tabasco sauce


Spiced Pecans:

1 lb. pecans

2 Tbsp. butter

1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce

3-4 shots Tabasco sauce

Kosher salt to taste


Preheat oven to 300.

In frying pan, melt butter, and add nuts, Worcestershire sauce, and Tabasco. Stir until nuts absorb liquid, about five minutes. Spread nuts on cookie sheet and bake about 20 minutes. As they cool, sprinkle with salt to taste.