The Romancing The Bee Diet – Day 5 – Honey-Orange Roasted Duckling

roasted orange duck

Day 5 and things are going great! I’ve lost about two pounds and I haven’t felt hungry or deprived. Honey doesn’t push my “eating button” like refined sugar does!

The handy thing is that I can use today’s cooking in tomorrow’s fare. In this case it will be Warm Duck Salad. I’ll use my leftovers, but tomorrow’s recipe assumes you will be cooking duck especially for the salad.

Yield:  4-6 servings

Ingredients:

1 5-lb. duckling

¼ tsp salt

1/8 tsp pepper

1 Tbsp honey

2 Tbsp orange juice

2 Tbsp olive oil

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375F.  Truss duckling and place on a rack over a roasting pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 1 hour 15 minutes.

Combine honey, orange juice and olive oil. Set aside.

Remove duckling from oven and brush evenly with honey-orange mixture. Pour any that’s left over into the body cavity. Return the duckling to the oven for 15 minutes or until the skin turns a rich golden brown.

Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes.  Serve with steamed non-starchy vegetables.

The Romancing The Bee Diet – Honey-Glazed Roasted Pears

roasted pears

Even though I’m on a diet, I still have a sweet tooth.  This is for dessert tonight and breakfast tomorrow morning!

Servings: 2

Ingredients:

1 lemon

2 medium ripe pears (Anjou, Comice, Bartlett or Bosc)

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons honey

Directions:

1. Heat the oven to 425 degrees. Set the rack on the top shelf of the oven. Peel the lemon’s zest into 4 long strips. Peel the pears and leave the stems on if they have not already fallen off. Cut a slice 1 inch in diameter and one-third-inch thick off the bottom of each pear so it will stand up in the roasting pan. Place the pears in the roasting pan and add the lemon zest, butter, honey and 2 1/2 cup water. You do not need to mix the ingredients ahead of time because they will all melt together into a syrup in the oven.

2. Place the roasting pan on a cookie tray just in case the juices boil over. Bake until all the honey has dissolved and the tops of the pears are beginning to brown, about 30 minutes.

3. Remove the pan from the oven. Using a rubber spatula, push the pears over so they are lying on their sides. Return to the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Rotate the pears to the opposite side and bake another 20 minutes. The pears will continue to take on color. Do not be alarmed if the tops of the pears become a very dark brown. You want them to caramelize.

4. The pears are poached when a knife inserted into the center slides in easily and the pear is somewhat soft to the touch. If the pears seem hard and uncooked, bake them lying down for up to 20 minutes longer.

5. Once the pears are poached, stand them back up and bake for 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and baste the pears with the caramelized juices (which will continue to reduce into a syrup). Return the pears to the oven and repeat this process three more times for a total of 45 more minutes. The pears are done when the tops are almost black and the flesh is a shiny, deep caramel color. You might need to roast the pears for another 10 to 20 minutes to get this beautiful caramel shine. Remove the pears from the oven and baste one last time. The basting liquid should by now have become a syrupy caramel.

6. Carefully remove the pears from the roasting pan and place them on a tray or plate to cool. Save the caramel sauce, discarding the lemon zest. Once the pears have cooled, remove the core from the bottom with a small melon baller or paring knife. You need to carve out a cone shape from the bottom to remove the pear’s seeds. To serve, reheat the pears in the oven.

7. Place each pear on a plate with a drizzle of the pear caramel sauce.

Winter Salads – Honey-Roasted Root Vegetable And Arugula Salad

“To make a good salad is to be a brilliant diplomatist — the problem is entirely the same in both cases. To know exactly how much oil one must put with one’s vinegar.”  Oscar Wilde

Makes 4 servings

Roasted Vegetables

1 pound medium beets, with 1 inch of the stem attached

1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces

1 pound parsnips, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces

1 pound turnips, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

3 small white onions (about 3/4 pound), cut into 2-inch wedges

Salt and freshly ground pepper

3 tablespoons honey, warmed

1 tablespoon chopped sage leaves

4 ounces fresh goat cheese, at room temperature

1/4 cup minced fresh herbs, such as chives, tarragon and flat-leaf parsley

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Salad

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons sherry vinegar

1 large garlic clove, minced

1 tablespoon minced herbs, such as chives, tarragon and flat-leaf parsley

Salt and freshly ground pepper

4 cups packed arugula leaves (from two 4-ounce bunches)

Preheat the oven to 400°. Tightly wrap the beets in a double layer of aluminum foil and roast them on the bottom shelf of the oven for 1 1/2 hours, or until they are tender when pierced with the tip of a knife. When the beets are cool enough to handle, peel and cut them into 1-inch pieces.

Meanwhile, divide the carrots, parsnips and turnips between 2 large rimmed baking sheets. Toss the vegetables in each pan with 1 tablespoon of the vegetable oil. Arrange the onion wedges on the baking sheets, keeping them intact. Brush the onion wedges all over with the remaining 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil. Generously season the vegetables with salt and pepper. Roast the vegetables for 40 minutes. Brush the vegetables with the warm honey and sprinkle with the sage. Continue to roast the vegetables for 25 minutes longer, or until they are tender and glazed. Loosen the vegetables with a spatula and let them cool to room temperature in the pans.

In a small bowl, mix the goat cheese with the herbs and olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

In a small bowl, combine the olive oil with the vinegar, garlic and herbs; season with salt and pepper. In a large bowl, toss the arugula with 1 tablespoon of the vinaigrette and arrange on plates. Add the roasted vegetables to the bowl and toss with the remaining vinaigrette. Top the arugula with the vegetables, dot each plate with small spoonfuls of the herbed goat cheese and serve.

Cranberry Week – Roast Duck With Honey Cranberry Glaze

Did you know that cranberries help prevent stomach ulcers?  Most peptic ulcers are caused by a bacterial infection, Helicobacter pylori. Cranberries havebeen shown to inhibit the adhesion of these bacteria to the stomach lining. With 25 million Americans suffering from peptic ulcers in their lifetime, this is a significant health problem.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups cranberries
  • 1 cup honey
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 4-pound duck
  • 1 3-inch strip of orange peel
  • 1 medium onion
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper as desired
  • 1/3 cup white wine
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Preparation

Rinse the cranberries carefully under running water and pick them over to remove any that have spoiled.

Mix one cup of cranberries,1/2 cup of the honey and one-half cup of water in a small saucepan and cook, simmering, until the cranberries are very soft. Strain through a sieve into a small bowl. The honey liquid is the glaze for the duck.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Remove the gizzard, heart and liver from the duck and set aside. Put the orange peel, half the onion and about half a teaspoon of salt and pepper in the cavity.

Paint the duck with a little of the cranberry glaze.Place the duck on a rack in a roasting pan and roast for 45 minutes. Every 15 minutes, paint the surface with a little of the cranberry glaze.

Remove the duck from the oven and prick the skin all over with a fork to release the fat. Return to the oven and continue roasting, painting every 15 minutes with the glaze, for a total of two hours.

While the duck is roasting, make a broth with the innards: Roughly chop the remaining half onion and the duck innards. Place in a small saucepan with the wine, another half teaspoon of salt and pepper and a cup of water. Simmer gently for an hour or more, until the broth is reduced to approximately one-half cup of flavorful liquid. Strain the broth and discard the solids.

Mix the remaining half cup of cranberries with the remaining half cup of water, the remaining honey and the balsamic vinegar. Cook together for 10 minutes until the mixture is syrupy. Set aside.

When the duck has finished roasting, remove it from the oven and set aside. It should be a beautiful dark-red color.

Strain the pan juices into a glass measuring cup and carefully remove the duck fat that floats to the top. (Do not discard: duck fat is wonderful for roasting or frying potatoes.) Add the innard broth to the roasting juices and use this to deglaze the roasting pan, scraping up the roasting bits that have stuck to the pan. Strain the whole through a fine sieve and place in a small saucepan.

Add the cranberry-vinegar syrup to the pan juices and broth. If there is any glaze remaining, add that to the mixture and bring the whole to a simmer just to warm it and mix everything together.

Carve the duck if you wish, or send it whole to the table, together with the warm cranberry sauce.

YIELD

4 – 6 servings