In her Recipes of all Nations, Marcelle Morphy gives an adaptation of the ‘quaint original recipe in old French’ from the 14th century Le Grand Cuisinier de Toute Cuisine of this classic duck dish.
Alas all to no avail!
The more complicated boned version, triumphed by Prosper Montagne in his Larousse Gastronomique, has completely usurped the rustic version to the extent that it is now almost forgotten.
Here is an adaptation of Countess Morphy’s Dodine de Canard.
- 2 kg duck, jointed in 8 pieces
- 600 ml dry red wine
- 250 g mushrooms, quartered
- 100 ml brandy
- 4 onions, sliced
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 sprig of thyme
- Parsley, handful
- 15 g olive oil Salt Pepper
Marinade duck pieces with the brandy, onion and wine, and large pinches of salt and pepper. Leave for three hours.
Strain the marinade liquid, dry duck pieces.
Brown the duck pieces in oil over a high heat in a heavy based saucepan. Add marinade liquid, the herbs, garlic and mushrooms.
Turn heat down, simmer for 60 minutes.
Serve with cooking liquid, and a choice of vegetables.
This is an adaptation of the boned, stuffed version.
- 2 kg duck
- 1 litre broth
- 250 g fatty bacon / pork belly (half fat-half flesh), chopped small
- 250 g pork tenderloin, chopped small
- 250 g veal, chopped small
- 250 g white mushrooms, chopped
- Duck liver, chopped
- 2 eggs
- 45 g almonds, ground
- 1 slice of fresh foie gras (optional)
- 45 ml brandy / cognac
- 15 g + 5 g salt
- 15 g butter
- 10 g ground mixed spices (from caraway, cinnamon, cloves, fennel)
- 5 g + 5 g black pepper
- 5 parsley stalks with leaves, chopped
- 5 sage leaves, chopped
Starting at the back, debone the duck without damaging the skin. Remove all the flesh from the skin, cut the flesh into small pieces. Keep the breasts intact, remove the skin and fat, cut into strips, place in a bowl with brandy or cognac and half of the ground spices, refrigerate for 24 hours. Season the skin on both sides.
Sauté the duck liver in the butter for a few minutes, remove from heat and leave to cool.
Combine the bacon or pork belly, pork loin, veal, the flesh from the duck and the liver. Season this mixture with remainder of spices, the black pepper and salt. Add the almonds, eggs, mushrooms, parsley and sage and, if using, the foie gras. Work this mixture with your hands for a few minutes.
Spread the mixture over the middle of the duck skin. Place the marinated breast strips on top. Bring the skin together, tie the neck and tail ends with string. Tie some string around the dodine to hold it together.
Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Place the dodine in a casserole dish, pour the broth and the liquid from the marinade, cook for arpound two hours. Baste with the cooking liquid from time to time. When the dodine is cooked remove from the oven. Leave to rest for a few minutes, then cut the string.
Put four tablespoons of the cooking liquid into a small saucepan, add half a glass of wine, reduce by half.
If a cold dodine is required, leave to cool in the liquid, then cut off the string. Spoon 500 ml of the cooking liquid into a pot, reduce until there is only about four tablespoons left, leave to cool. Cover the duck with the resulting jelly and place in the refrigerator. Retain the jelly and repeat a second time several hours later. Leave the dodine in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours.
Serve cold, sliced with a salad
This is a modern interpretation of the original recipe.
- 3 x 350 g duck fillets, skinned
- 250 g duck liver, sliced
- 200 g pork loin, chopped
- 200 g veal, chopped
- 150 g fat bacon, chopped
- 130 ml brandy
- 100 ml white wine
- 80 g 1-day old white bread roll
- 45 ml milk
- 45 g truffles, sliced (optional)
- 20 g butter
- 12 sage leaves, sliced
- 1 tsp allspice, ground
- Black pepper, large pinch
- Salt, large pinch
- 1 pork caul
Cut duck fillets into 2cm thick slices, marinade in brandy and seasonings overnight.
Soak bread bun in milk for 20 minutes, squeeze to remove liquid.
Brown the liver in butter, leave to cool.
Combine the allspice, bacon, bread, duck, liver, pork, sage, seasonings and veal in marinade liquid.
Soak the caul in cold water.
Stuff caul with meat mixture, tie with string.
Preheat oven to 180°C.
Place caul in a baking tray.
Bake at 160°C for two hours.
When cold remove to fridge for 12 hours before serving.
This version is cooked slowly in broth.
- 2 litres broth
- 1.5 kg duck
- 500 g pork tenderloin, sliced
- 250 g veal, sliced
- Duck liver, sliced
- 2 eggs
- 15 ml brandy
- 10 g salt
- 1 tsp allspice, ground
- 1 tsp pepper
- Butter, for frying
Open the duck from the back, slowly stripping back the skin. Carefully remove the flesh from the skin and excess fat, taking each breast out whole. Debone.
Cut the breast into little slices, like aiguillettes.
Fry liver in butter for five minutes, leave to cool.
Slice the rest of the duck flesh and add to the liver, pork and veal in a large bowl. Season with allspice, pepper and salt, mix in the eggs and brandy.
Return to the spread-out duck, season liberally with pepper, and spoon the meat mixture over the central area. Salt the aiguillettes and lay them evenly over the mixture.
Being all the edges of the duck skin together and sew tightly. Wrap in muslin, tie both ends.
Put in a large pot with the broth, bring to a slow boil, then simmer for two hours.
Serve hot or cold.