Slow-cooked until tender and coated in a mouthwateringly sticky glaze, this duck is a stunning centrepiece to serve up on Christmas day. Serve with roasted shallots, juicy clementines and cinnamon sticks for a wonderfully festive main.
- Preheat the oven to gas 4, 180°C, fan 160°C. Pat the duck dry with kitchen towel and rub 1 tsp salt all over the skin. Put the bird breast-side down in a roasting tin with the shallots and roast in the oven for 1 hr.
- Drain all the fat from the tin, including any that has collected inside the duck. Reserve for roasting potatoes (don't pour it down the drain!).
- Use wooden spoons to carefully turn the duck over so that it sits breast-side up in the tin with the shallots around the edges. Surround the duck with the halved clementines, bay leaves and cinnamon sticks, then return to the oven to roast for a further hour, basting twice during this time.
- Combine the maple syrup and mustard with the remaining ½ tsp salt and spoon or brush over the duck skin. Roast the duck for 15 mins more, until the skin is deeply golden and glazed.
- Season with plenty of black pepper, transfer to a platter and surround with the shallots, clementines, bay leaves, cinnamon sticks and any pan juices to serve. The duck will be very tender and easy to carve at the table.
Tip: To peel shallots easily, submerge them in a saucepan of simmering water for 50-60 secs. Drain, cool then trim the root ends – the skins will slip off no problem.
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For top tips on protecting you and your family when preparing raw meat and poultry, visit Food Safety in the Home.