This delicious roast duck dinner served with homemade Cointreau gravy will impress all the guests at lunch.
- For the duck
- 1 duck, approximately 2kg (4lb) prepared weight
- 4 level tbsp thin-cut orange marmalade
- 2tbsp Cointreau
- For the gravy
- 2tbsp cornflour
- Few drops of gravy browning, optional
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2tbsp Cointreau
Set the oven to fairly hot, gas mark 6 or 200°C. Prick the duck all over with a fork and place it on a rack in a roasting tin and sprinkle with a little salt. Roast in the centre of the oven for about 45 mins. Remove the duck from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to moderate, gas mark 4 or 180°C.
Warm the marmalade with the Cointreau until it’s runny, and brush it over the duck. Return the duck to the oven and cook for a further 1-1¼ hrs, basting it occasionally with any remaining marmalade mixture. Cook the duck until the juices run clear when the thickest part is pierced with a skewer. Remove from the oven, transfer it to a warm serving plate, cover with a sheet of foil and keep in a warm place for about 10-15 mins before carving, to allow the meat to ‘rest’.
To make the gravy: Strain the juices from the duck then use a separating jug, or skim off the fat. Make the juices up to 600ml (1 pint) with boiling water. Heat the juices to boiling point in a saucepan. Mix the cornflour with 2tbsp cold water, and gravy browning if using, and then slowly pour into the juices, stirring well to give a smooth gravy.
Season to taste, and stir in the Cointreau just before serving. Keep the gravy hot until serving. (Not suitable for freezing).
'Resting' the duck (and other meats and poultry) allows the juices to settle and also makes the meat easier to handle