Roast Duckling on New Year’s Eve

Let me tell you about our New Year’s Eve dinner. Well, it’s something between dinner and media noche because we had the meal at around 9.30 p.m. Roast duckling served on flour tortillas with shredded leeks and hoisin sauce. There should have been Chinese dumpling wrappers (not siomai wrappers but thicker ones) instead of flour tortillas but they’re really a headache to find in supermarkets and we always substitute flour tortillas when we can’t find dumpling wrappers.

We finished the 2-kilo duckling (should give you an idea of how hungry we were by the time the duckling was cooked). We also consumed half of the 10-inch peach and mango pie which is just a larger version of the mango cheese pie that we baked a few days ago with added chopped peaches in addition to the chopped mango.

We don’t like going overboard with food over the holidays. Although, admittedly, a food-laden dinner table looks festive, we try to be practical by considering how attractive leftovers will be after the fireworks have been lit and the celebratory mood has dissipated. So, a duckling and a cheese pie was just about right. And I doubt if we’d feel hungry enough for a midnight meal. Wine, fireworks, and photography sound better. My 14-year-old daughter Sam has been checking the skies every few minutes since we finished our meal to see if the fireworks display has begun. We’ll be lighting a few of our own too so let me finish this entry which should go live a minute after midnight.

To cook the duckling, rub the cavity with salt and coarsely ground pepper then stuff with whole onions, garlic, and leeks. How many depends on how big your onions and garlic are. I used two onions one garlic and a bunch of leeks. Run the skin with more salt then wrap the duckling in aluminum foil. Place in a roasting tin and cook in a 170oC oven for half and hour for every pound. Peel off the foil during the last 30 minutes of cooking to brown the skin and make it crisp.