Monday, March 15, 2010

Duck Prosciutto

Yes, duck prosciutto. What could be better? Gamey, salty, ducky, pork-esque cured meat.

I used the salt/sugar/spice ratio from them apples, then wrapped the breasts in a double-layer of cheesecloth, and hung them from a cooling rack for 10 days. I was aiming for 30% weight loss, recommended by Michael Ruhlman. Some recipes said 7 days, and I read one that said 5 weeks. At 10 days, I was at 28-29%, and decided that I was done, because I didn't want the duck to dry out too much around the edges. I started out the hanging in the refrigerator, but then got worried about the low humidity, so decided to move the rack to the kitchen counter during the day, and the fridge at night. I would've loved to hang them outside - the temperature has been perfect, but with all the rain, I was worried about too much humidity. And bugs.

So here are my ducky babies wrapped and hanging after their 3 day cure.



And here's what it looked like, finally unwrapped. Not very attractive, and to be honest, at this point I was slightly wary.



But, sliced, it took on a whole different look. A lot like "normal" prosciutto, actually:



What did it taste like? Kind of like prosciutto, but less salty. And more ducky. And delicious. I've got so many ideas in my head on how to use it - frittata, tortilla, spaghetti carbonara, potato au gratin. Or I'll just continue to shave off slice by slice and eat it unadorned and unadulterated.

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16 comments:

Chris said...

Wow! *Bowing* You are awesome for attempting AND succeeding at this! Would love to taste some!

Vicki said...

Hi Chris - I'm not that awesome, I just repeated what others have done :) The duck, however, is awesome.

doggybloggy said...

I am so very impressed - great job and inspirational too - I think I am going to make some.

Vicki said...

Hey doggybloggy - Thanks! I hope you do it, it's a tasty adventure :)

kat said...

Wow, how cool it that?!

Vicki said...

Hey kat - It's pretty cool. And tasty :)

Bob said...

Sweet merciful crap, that is awesome!

I can understand the allure of just eating it all by itself, but you have to do something with it. I need to live vicariously through you. :)

Vicki said...

Hey Bob - I think I'm gonna do spaghetti carbonara...

katerina said...

Wow making your own Proscuitto, that is very impressive, and Duck no less!

Vicki said...

Hi katerina - I can't wait to cure more stuff - I'm thinking bresaola next.

Danielle said...

This is a great idea!! I can't wait to see what ideas you share with us :)

Vicki said...

Hi Danielle - All I've done with it so far (besides eating it slice by slice) is spaghetti carbonara - most definitely delicious!

rich (them apples) said...

Good effort. Delicious, isn't it?

We shouldn't let on how easy this is. There's some serious kudos there that needs to be milked...

I didn't actually 'do' anything with mine, I just shaved slices off and ate them stood in the cold light of the refrigerator. I find I eat some of my best meals there...

Thanks for the link too. Much appreciated.

Vicki said...

Hey Rich - You're right, I should edit my post to say how agonizingly difficult this was :) Thanks for giving me the courage to finally cure something!

Desco said...

You mean a prosciutto that my kosher friends can actually enjoy? I gotta try it.

It's basically raw duck confit-- or perhaps duck confit is the duck equivalent of prosciutto cotto?

Vicki said...

Desco - But confit is oil-cooked, I've never seen an Italian ham done that way. Hmm...gives me an idea.