mike kostyo

I know food.

duck dumplings w/ orange zest in duck broth

Did you know a duck's quack doesn't echo and nobody knows why? Did you know that fact is completely made up and you shouldn't believe everything you read in one of those dumb lists of 'facts" somebody forwards you in an email and says you have to forward to 10 more people?

Sadly, I can only wish I was making up how expensive duck is - $30 for a whole one at the local supermarket. Ridiculous. Luckily, this recipe requires only an arm and a leg, or actually a breast and a thigh. I'll be here all week.

It was still something like $8 for that breast and thigh from the Whole Foods. But because duck is the main ingredient in this dish, it's cost effective. Or something. I don't know. You're either going to make it or you aren't going to make it, I don't know why it's always necessary to go into all these reasons why you should make it and how expensive ingredients are worth it and on and on.

So make this, if you want. It's good.

duck dumplings w/ orange zest in duck broth

+ 1 duck thigh
+ 1 duck breast
+ water to cover
+ 2 carrots, julienned, peels and tops rinsed and reserved
+ 2 celery stalks, chopped, scraps rinsed and reserved
+ 1 medium onion, chopped, tops rinsed and reserved
+ salt
+ pepper
+ 1 10-ounce jar marinated mushrooms, drained
+ 1 orange, zested and juiced
+ 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
+ 1 package wonton wrappers
+ 2 tablespoons chopped parsley

In a large stock pot, combine the duck thigh, duck breast, water, carrot scraps, celery scraps, onion scraps and a good bit of salt and pepper over medium heat. If you keep other vegetable scraps in your freezer for making stock (who doesn't?), you may want to put some in now. If you want to make this faster, you can use chicken stock instead of duck and cook until the duck is just cooked through. Cook until just simmering - not boiling. Let simmer until the duck is cooked and the broth is flavorful. Add more salt if needed.

Remove the duck breast and thigh and set aside. Strain the broth into another bowl or container. Discard the scraps. Return the broth to the pot. Add the carrots, celery, onion, mushrooms, orange juice and garlic. Set over medium-low heat.

Meanwhile, remove all of the meat from the duck breast and thigh. Chop finely. Mix with 1 tablespoon of the orange zest. Season with salt and pepper. 

To fill each wonton, spoon a small scoop of the duck/orange zest filling into the center of each wonton. Dip your finger into a small bowl of water and run along the connected edge of two of the wonton sides. Fold the corner that hasn't been moistened to meet the other corner to make a triangle. Use the tines of a fork to press the edges together. Repeat with the rest of the filling.

(This will make at least 30 dumplings, so you may want to freeze half of them. To do so, place them in a single layer on a cookie sheet and freeze. Once they are completely frozen you can drop them into a freezer bag and keep in the freezer. You can boil them straight from the freezer).

When ready, add the chopped parsley to the broth and vegetable mixture and bring to a boil. Once boiling, drop the dumplings into the broth and boil for a minute or two - you are really only cooking the wonton wrapper. When they are translucent they are ready. Serve in bowls. 

serves 4-6