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Have some questions on how to smoke a duck.

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Next month I have some friends coming over to celebrate Christmas and Thanksgiving, we set the date in between both holidays.  I have cooked a duck in the past but never smoked a duck and would like to give it a try.  So I have a few questions if anyone could answer them for me I would appreciate it.  


1. What would is best wood for smoking a duck and about how long do you smoke it for and the temperature of the duck should be at when finished?


2.  Do I need to let the duck soak in a brine and if so for how long?


3.  Also if someone could give me a good recipe for smoked duck like rub or something else to put on it? 



Thank You for  your help!

post #2 of 6

Hello Shea.  I am only posting my opinion to "bump" this thread so that others who may have missed it can offer advice.  My first question is are we talking wild or domesticated?  Since you posted in Poultry and not Wild Game, I will assume you are talking domestic.  I have not smoked duck but have, as you mentioned cooked it before.  As you know domestic duck breast is pretty fatty.  I wouldn't think brine would not be necessary unless you are looking for a certain flavour profile.  If I was grilling duck or oven cooking I would use the same temps as for the same size chix or turk and I would take the breast to the same IT as chicken or turkey, worked for me in the past for grilled duck breast.  As you know duck has a stronger flavour than chix or turk so I think could handle some stronger smoke.  This may be a preference thing.  Do you like the strong or the mild smoke?  Being from Texas my first reply is MESQUITE!  I don't care if it's smoked cardboard, MESQUITE!  :icon_lol:  Mesquite isn't to everyone's taste and will be very bold on domestic duck IMHO.  I would go for a mix.  1/2 Pecan, !/4 oak, or hickory (I would chose oak), 1/4 cherry. Cherry adds sweetness and great color to smoked meat.  Rubs.  I am old school.  I don't use rubs very often.  Like the meat to shine.  As a first trial I'd keep it simple.  Salt and pepper.  Now if you want to get "crazy" MAYBE SPOG and a sprinkle of celery salt, along with orange slices and a few lemon slices in the cavity.  I'd just go with S and P ( catenne or black ) and maybe the citrus slices for the first go.  If I may offer 1 tip, gently work your hand between the skin on the breast and the breast meat.  Loosen as much skin from the meat as possible.  Then place uncovered in the fridge for a couple hours to dry the skin.  At the end of your smoke, crank your smoker temp up  or put the duck on a hot grill to crisp the skin.  The loose skin will crisp up easier.  These thought are just where I would start and then make changes next time.  At the least I have bumped you question so that others may reply.  Good luck.  Keep Smokin!


post #3 of 6

Hello Shea.  I was hoping my "bump" would get you more and better responses.  Use the search bar and just type in smoked duck.  I found several threads when I checked.  Good luck.  Keep Smokin!


post #4 of 6
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

Thanks for both of your help.  The Honey Balsamic Glaze looked great and yummy! 

post #6 of 6
Shea, ducks are done when the breast meat reaches 165°. There are those that say duck is best served medium (145°-150°) but I wouldn't attempt it even if it was slaughtered at a processing plant and USDA inspected.

No matter which way you cook the duck, prick or slash the skin so that the redering duck fat can drain off.
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