Thanksgiving Duck

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  • 1 duck
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • optional: stuffing
  • optional: potatoes, sweet potatoes or other vegetables, olive oil, spices

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Remove giblets and neck. Rinse the duck, inside and out, and pat dry.

Rub the duck inside and out with salt, black pepper, paprika, mustard and garlic.

If you stuff the duck, use the flap of skin from the neck to cover the cavity. You will need more stuffing than you think -- a duck must have larger internal organs for its size than a turkey does.

Cut the skin under the legs and wings. Prick the skin all over with a fork -- the duck will baste itself.

Place breast-up in a roasting pan (elevated on a rack, so it doesn't swim in its own grease).

Dribble some water around the duck.

Optionally, cut some potatoes and/or other vegetables into quarters and coat with olive oil, possibly with salt, pepper and/or other spices, and put around the outer edge of the pan 45 minutes before the duck is done.

Cook an unstuffed duck for 60 minutes plus 15 minutes per pound, and a stuffed duck for 90 minutes plus 15 minutes per pound; or until the internal temperature (measured at the thigh joint) is 185 degrees Fahrenheit, the leg moves freely and the juices run clear.

This is part of my traditional Thanksgiving menu.

Serves: 2 to 3

Preparation time: 30 minutes (before cooking)