- 1 duck, 2 kg / 4 lbs, boned except for the legs, and cleaned
- 4 duck breasts with the skins discarded
For the spice mixture or paste :
- 10 shallots or 2 large onions, chopped
- 8 cloves garlic, chopped
- 5 red chillies, seeds removed, chopped; or 2 tsp chilli powder
- 6 candlenuts or macadamia nuts, or 3 Tbsp ground almond
- 4 tsp coriander seeds
- 2 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 cloves
- 2 green cardamoms
- 2.5-cm / 1-inch stick of cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground or grated nutmeg
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 2 tsp chopped galingale
- 1 tsp ground white pepper
- 5-cm / 2-inch stem of lemon grass, outer leaf discarded, chopped
- 3 kaffir lime leaves, shredded
- 1 tsp shrimp paste
- 3 Tbsp tamarind water or lime juice
- 2 Tbsp peanut oil
- 2 Tbsp water
- 1 tsp salt
To add to the sauce:
500 g / 1 lb spinach, washed and shredded
How To Make :
- Blend all the ingredients for the paste together until smooth.
- Transfer the mixture to a saucepan and simmer for 6-8 minutes, stirring often. Then remove it to a bowl and leave it to get cold. Adjust the seasoning.
- When the paste is cold, rub it all over the duck and the duck breasts. Put the duck breasts inside the boned duck by arranging them in such a way that when you close the duck it will look like a whole duck again.
- To sew the duck: spread the boned duck on a board, skin side down. Arrange the already-marinated duck breasts inside. Bring the duck skin up over the duck breasts to enclose them completely. Sew the cut edges of the skin with a trussing needle and white string. Make 3 or 4 ties around the circumference of the duck to give it a cylinder shape. Wrap the duck with 2 or 3 layers of aluminium foil, quite loosely, but sealing the top well.
- Everything up to this point can be done the day before, and the parcel can be left in the fridge overnight so that the duck marinates thoroughly.
- To cook, pre-heat the oven to 160ºC / 320ºF / Gas Mark 3, and put the parcel on a baking tray in the middle of the oven. Cook for 2 hours, then reduce the heat to 120ºC / 250ºF / Gas Mark ½ and continue cooking for a further 3-4 hours.
- Leave the parcel to cool a little, then unwrap and transfer the duck to a large heat-proof dish. Take away all the string. Separate and discard the oil from the cooking juices. Put the cooking juices in a small saucepan, add to this the washed and shredded spinach leaves. Heat, and serve as a thick sauce.
- Before serving, put the duck into the oven again, on a high heat, and heat till the skin is quite crisp. Or put the duck under the grill in the oven for about 6 – 8 minutes to crisp the skin. To serve, cut the duck down the middle lengthwise, then slice each half separately into slices about 1 cm thick.