Duck a l'orange

The old classics are often the best and they don't come much better than this retro French favourite of roasted duck with a rich orange sauce by Trish Deseine
By Trish Deseine
Duck a l'orange
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Effort: medium


For the duck

  • 2 carrots, cut into 2cm pieces
  • 2 shallots, quartered
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 orange, quartered
  • 1 duck, (about 1.5kg-1.75kg in weight)

For the orange sauce

  • 100 g caster or granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 2 oranges, zest only
  • 250 ml orange juice
  • 75 g butter
  • 1 orange, finely sliced

To serve

  • boiled new potatoes
  • baby boiled carrots


1. For the duck: preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4.

2. Scatter the carrots, two-thirds of the shallots, the bay leaf and half the orange quarters over the bottom of a roasting tin, squeezing the orange quarters gently to release some juice into the tin.

3. Stuff the remaining shallot and orange quarters inside the cavity of the duck then sit the duck on top of the vegetables in the tin.

4. Roast the duck for about 1 hour 15 minutes, basting every half an hour, until the duck is cooked through.

5. Remove the duck from the oven and pour the cooking juices into a bowl (if you like, you can press the cooked vegetables from the roasting tin through a sieve into the cooking juices to extract as much flavour as possible). Keep the duck warm.

6. For the orange sauce: tip the sugar and water into a medium, heavy-based saucepan and set over a low heat.

7. Swirl the pan the help the sugar melt (do not use a spoon or other utensil to stir the sugar or it will crystallise) then allow the sugar to bubble for about 2 minutes until it starts to caramelise.

8. As soon as it turns a dark golden brown colour, remove it from the heat and carefully pour the duck cooking juices, the orange zest and orange juice into the caramel (take care because the caramel can spit and splutter at this stage).

9.Return the pan to a medium-high heat and simmer for about 15 minutes until the sauce is reduced to a pouring consistency.

10. Season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper then gradually whisk the butter into the sauce. Stir in the orange slices and heat through very gently.

11. To serve, carve the duck and serve it with the orange sauce, some boiled new potatoes and baby carrots.

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