Roasting duck to a crisp-skinned state of perfection isn’t hard, but it does take time and attention to detail. Several Chowhounds swear by the five-hour method: Prick the duck’s skin all over and roast on a rack at low heat for four hours, pricking again, flipping, and draining off the rendered fat every hour. Finally, turn up the heat for the last hour to crisp the skin. GretchenS roasts at 250 degrees Fahrenheit for those first four hours, and 350 degrees for the final hour. “Pretty low maintenance,” Val55 says.

If you can’t spare the five hours, Splendid Spatula says this Marcella Hazan method (simmer the duck briefly in water, then blast with a hair dryer before finishing in the oven) is terrific, and not as complicated as it sounds. And don’t forget to save all that rendered fat!

Discuss: Whole roast duck help

Photo by Flickr member Andrea_Nguyen under Creative Commons

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