See that succulent morsel, with browned and crispy skin? That's duck magret, and if offered the choice, I would probably choose it over a good steak. But when most Americans try to imagine a way to splurge just a bit on a special meal, steak is the first meat that comes to mind. A good steak is a wonderful thing, but I'm here to tell you: there are many other options for a really special dinner.
The first one that comes to my mind, as I already said, is duck breast. But not just any duck breast: duck magret. Duck magret is an extra-fatty duck breast from a duck that has been fattened for foie gras. These duck breasts are extremely tender, juicy, and yes, fatty. You'll render more fat than you'll ever need off duck magret.
The resulting meat is so delicious: reddish pink like a good steak, with an incredibly crispy skin that almost melts in your mouth. It's a serious indulgence, and probably just as expensive as an excellent steak.
So, why not? Next time you're looking for an extra-special meal, or trying to impress someone with a romantic dinner for two, why not try a duck breast instead? Poultry isn't just about chicken and the Thanksgiving turkey; if you eat meat then duck is a really wonderful indulgence, once in a while.
Duck magret is a little hard to find (unless you live in France) but look at your specialty butcher, and at Whole Foods. You can also find it at online purveyors like D'Artagnan:
• Duck Breast and Magret at D'Artagnan
The duck pictured above is from this cooking class I took in France.
If you cook duck, what is your favorite way to make it?
(Image: Faith Durand)