Friday, July 9, 2010

Pressed Duck

Pressed duck (alternate names: Canard à la presse, Caneton à la presse, Caneton Tour d'Argent, or canard au sang) is a traditional French dish. The complex dish was developed in the 19th century in the Tour d'Argent restaurant in Paris, France, and consists of various parts of a duck served in a sauce made of its blood and marrow, which is extracted by way of a press.

First, a duck (preferably young and plump and from Rouen) is strangled to retain its blood. The duck is then partially roasted. Its liver is ground and seasoned and its legs and breast are removed. The remaining carcass (including other meat, bones, and skin) is then put in a specially designed press, similar to a wine press. Pressure is applied to extract duck blood and other juices from the carcass. The juice from the carcass is thickened and flavored with the duck's liver, butter and cognac, and then combined with the breast to finish cooking. Other ingredients that may be added to the sauce include foie gras, port wine, Madeira wine, and lemon. The breast is sliced and served with the sauce in a first serving; the legs are broiled and served as the next course.

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