Barbecue Rotisserie Duck with Truffle Salt Potatoes

Have I mentioned how much we like a good duck?  I’ve cooked many a duck: tea smoked duck, steamed and fried crispy duck, duck braised in soy sauce and green onions, salted duck, duck confit, duck in blackberry sauce, roasted duck, duck sous vide, duck prosciutto, crispy duck in octo vinaigrette, duck yakitori, David Chang’s stuffed duck, and even a spatchcocked duck on the grill.  But once we heard Tom Douglas talk the other night about his rotisserie duck over potatoes, Chris came home and ordered a rotisserie attachment for our Weber charcoal grill.  Tom described slow roasting the duck set over a pan of potatoes whereby the duck fat dripped onto the potatoes and cooked them as the duck cooked.  My oh my.  Done and done.

1 Whole duck
¼ cup kosher salt
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon white pepper

Truffle salt for the potatoes

Tuesday, procure duck.  Wednesday, defrost duck.  Thursday, dry brine duck in kosher salt, sugar and ground pepper.  Prick the duck all over with a sharp metal prong before salt and peppering.  I bought one from Viet Wah in the international district here in Seattle.  Lay the duck on a rack set over a shallow pan and leave uncovered in the refrigerator until the next day.  This will help the skin dry out and produce a nice crispy skinned duck.

This is the tool I used to prick the skin.

With the rotisserie attachment for the Weber we got two compartments to hold the coals on either side of the barbecue.  Chris lit the coals at 5:25 and the coals were ready for the duck at 5:45.  

Take the duck out of the refrigerator 1 hour before you’re ready to cook.  Put it on the spit rod and secure it with the forks.  I tied the legs together and trussed the wings tight to the body.  Once the duck was on the grill, the legs worked their way out of the twine and I had to do a makeshift tie.  

Build a fire with the coals that will keep the grill at approximately 350f.  Once ready to cook, place a heat proof metal pan underneath where the duck will be.  I covered a shallow roasting pan with aluminum foil.  There was extra skin/fat from the duck which I cut into smaller piece and placed on the pan along with the neck.  The pan will catch all the fat from the duck and then serve as a roasting pan for the potatoes.  Put the duck onto the rotisserie and cook covered, maintaining the 350f temp on the grill.

While the duck is cooking, cut up 1-2 pounds of yukon gold potatoes and par boil them for about 5 minutes.  Drain and let sit just for a minute or so to let the moisture evaporate.  When the duck has been on for about 30 minutes, there should be enough fat in the pan from the duck to put the potatoes in for their roasting.  I sprinkled the potatoes with truffle salt before putting them into the fat.  Stir the potatoes around in the fat to make sure they are coated in the fat.  Cover the grill and continue to cook. For about 30 min.  The total cooking time for the duck should be 1 to 1 ¼ hours.  The duck should be medium to well.

Let the duck rest at least 10-15 minutes before carving.  If your potatoes are not well fried yet, leave them on the grill, over the coals while you let the duck rest.  We grilled some asparagus as well while the duck rested.  I think next time, we will also place some coals directly under the potatoes for hotter frying.

Really delicious!  We loved the duck and will definitely make it over and over again.

Update: I now render duck fat from extra fat trimmed off the duck and roast the potatoes in the oven.  Works just as well!


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