Basic Roast Duck

(from saymyname’s recipe box)

Source: Mark Bittman

Serves 4 people

Categories: Duck, Main Dish, Mark Bittman


  • 1 (4 -5 lb) duck, excess fat removed, rinsed and patted dry with paper towels
  • salt
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce


  1. Preheat oven to 350°; prick duck skin all over with a sharp fork, skewer, or thin-bladed knife; try not to hit the meat (the fat layer is usually about ¼ inch thick).

  2. Season the duck with salt and pepper and place it, breast side down, on a rack in a roasting pan.

  3. Roast the duck for 15 minutes, prick the exposed skin again, then roast another 15 minutes.

  4. Brush with a little soy sauce, and then turn it breast side up.

  5. Prick again, brush with a little more soy sauce, then roast until the meat is done, about another 45 minutes; all juices, including those from the center vent, should run clear and the leg bone should wiggle a little in its socket.

  6. When the bird is done, an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thigh will measure about 180°.

  7. Increase heat to 400° for the last 10 minutes of cooking if the duck is not as brown as you like.

  8. Carve duck and serve.

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