Carried away by the beautiful weather, a trip to the local greenmarket, and an extremely persuasive farmer, my boyfriend and I found ourselves walking home yesterday with a bag full of ramps, baby potatoes, kale, and a five-pound moulard duck. While I’ll take any opportunity to order duck, I’d never actually cooked it, so we spent most of the walk home contemplating theories and weighing the differences between ducks and chickens (which, if you’re curious, I researched and included below in a fancy Powerpoint graph).
In the end, we decided to take the advice of the farmer who sold it to us (“You have to stuff it with ramps. It’s a once-in-a-season opportunity.”) and use the cooking directions from a Bon Appetit recipe for Roast Duck with Potatoes (sans the figs and rosemary). The recipe instructed me to score the backs and thighs with a paring knife to release the fat, then stuff it with vegetables of my choice before putting the entire bird in a roasting pan to cook at 425º F for 50 minutes, then with the potatoes for another hour. And you know what? It was delicious.