Black-Pot Roasted Teal


MAKES 4 TO 6 SERVINGS

  • 6 wild teal (blue wing, green wing, or cinnamon) or other wild duck, skinned
  • 3 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 tablespoons Frank Davis Wild
  • Game Seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons Frank Davis Poultry Seasoning
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large white onions, sliced into rings
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine (Chablis preferred)
  • 4 cloves fresh garlic, chopped fine
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon sweet basil
  • 2 cups concentrated chicken stock, as needed
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch

Wash teal and dry them with paper towels. Liberally rub them down—inside and out—with salt, white, black, and cayenne pepper, wild game seasoning, and poultry seasoning. Set aside.

Add the vegetable oil to a 6-quart cast-iron Dutch oven and heat over high until the oil is to the point of smoking. One at a time, brown the ducks all over until they turn a deep toasty color. When all the ducks have been thoroughly seared, set them aside and add the onion slices to the pot. Fry the onions over high heat, stirring constantly, until they are caramelized, about 10 minutes. The caramelization process converts the acid in the onions to natural sugars and makes the resultant gravy rich and tasty.

When the onions are cooked, pour in the wine and add the garlic, bay leaves, basil, 1 cup chicken stock, and additional salt and pepper to taste. Stir and add the ducks back into the pot. They should be tightly nestled, side by side. Spoon the basting liquid over the ducks, making sure each is thoroughly coated. Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid, reduce the heat to medium-low, and smother the ducks for 15 minutes.

Remove the lid and thoroughly baste the ducks again. Cover the pot again, reduce heat to low, and simmer the ducks for 1 to 2 hours or until the meat starts to fall away from the bone. Remove the ducks from the black pot, cut them with kitchen shears into serving size portions, and place them on a platter in a warming oven. Combine the pan drippings in the black pot with remaining chicken stock blended with the cornstarch. Bring the mixture to a rolling boil and allow it to thicken, about 5 minutes. Ladle the gravy liberally over the duck pieces.

Chef ‘s Notes:

1. To take the easy way out, instead of simmering the birds on top of the stove, slide the Dutch oven into a preheated 350°F degree oven and cook
them there for 1 to 1-1/2 hours.


2. Regular white buttered rice tossed with green onion tops…or homemade mashed potatoes blended with a liberal amount of heavy cream…or
maybe even old-fashioned dirty rice with a definite Cajun flair…or—for the ultimate—a big pan of New Orleans-style macaroni and cheese all make
super accompaniments to this pot-roasted teal meal.


3. Check the liquid level in the pot periodically as the teal cook. If the stock and renderings become too low, simply add a bit more wine or chicken
stock.


4. This can be prepared a day or two in advance and reheated.

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