typical recipe cooked on 'Festa Major' day (town celebration day) basically
in Girona counties, but spread to all Catalonia. The same recipe was
traditionally cooked with goose instead of duck, something that delighted
Salvador Dalí who used to eat it in the Duran restaurant
may be cooked with other fruits such as peaches, apples, figs or cherries
as it is done in North Catalonia. Duck with oranges is a classical meal
which is supposed to come from the french cooking. Poultry with oranges
was already cooked in Middle Ages and Renaixença (the
catalan art nouveau movement followed by Gaudí, Aribau,
Verdaguer...at late 19th century) and, in Italy, it is considered a
typical roast "a la catalana", as said by Bartolomeo
dei Sacchi, called Platina in his De la honestra voluptate,
e valetudine (1487).
Penedès County, mute duck (with Guarantee of Origin) with prunes
and pinenuts is very appreciated. In Menorca, conception nuns from Maó
used to cook an exquisite duck with jelly. Maybe a recipe inspired by
the "Anades estofados" cookbook from the royal cooker Francisco
Motiño (printed in Barcelona on 1763 and kept in this convent).
Combining the fat meat from duck with fruits is something already invented
by the Roman Empire.
the mute duck is preferred (coming from America) since it is mute as
its name shows... and less fat.
first documentation found by me about duck with pears appears in Ignasi
Domènech - Escoffier
disciple - cookbook La teca, printed in 1924. Josep Lladonosa
states in his one (El gran llibre de la cuina catalana,1991) that its
origin comes from the town of Salt (Gironès county), which seems
if the origin of this recipe comes from Girona Counties, it always used
goose since there, duck has always been cooked with turnips. The first
known recipe was published by the author in La cuina gironina ,Barcelona,1985.
used in Middle Ages were probably too sharp to be eaten. In Cerdanya
were used as vegetables, sometimes with turnips, or to obtain a delicious
1 mute duck, 1 flour spoon, 1/2 glass of vi ranci (dry wine),
olive oil, salt, black pepper, cinnamon, 1 onion, 2 tomatoes, a little
of sugar, water, Puigcerdà pears (ercolines or blanquilla)
For the picada: 50 g almonds and pinenuts, garlic, parlsey,
2 biscuits (or fried bread)
Once the duck is cleaned and cutted in about 8 pieces, fry it with some
olive oil. Put in the wine with salt, pepper and cinnamon. Once cooked,
put it away and put the fat away from the meat. Cook a sofregit
with cutted onions and just a little of water. Once golden, put in the
tomato juice. Once it gets brown add salt and sugar. Duck previously
cooked may now be added, with some water, to softly boil (xup-xup)
for 45 minutes. Pears may be boiled meanwhile in another pot, with
some salt, cutted or not, but without peel. Don't boil them so much.
Then add to the duck. The picada and wine will be added one
quarter before its finished. Salt & pepper correction at the end.
Duck may be cooked in the oven to help it lose its fat. Strain the sauce.
Pears may be fried instead of boiled with some flour. Tomato or sofregit
may be avoided.
Cognac or brandy may be used instead of vi ranci, as well as garnatxa
Use biscuits, carquinyolis, ametllats for the picada.
Species such as nutmeg is optional but cinnamon or pepper is a must
in atraditional catalan roast.
A personal contribution: use pear liquor Williams instad of cognac.
JAUME FÀBREGA cookbook El gust d’ un poble. Els plats més
famosos de la cuina catalana, Ed. Cossetània, Valls,2002)
find below another of the videos produced by CatalanCooking.com where
Titi cooks a duck with pears. Find the differences with Jaume Fàbrega
is proud to present the second article from Jaume Fàbrega, an
internationally recognised expert in Catalan Cooking awarded with 2000,
2003 and 2004 Gourmand World Cookbook Awards.
considered to be the nº1 catalan cooking writer.