Whole duck, 4 to 5 pounds
2 to 3 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes,
cut into bite-sized chunks
6 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
Olive oil, for drizzling
Bottle of wine (this is for the cook,
not the duck)
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Thoroughly wash and dry duck. Cut off excess skin from both ends of the cavity (I use this to render more duck fat but feel free to discard). Using a very sharp knife, prick skin all over, being careful not to pierce the meat. Place duck, breast side up, in a deep roasting pan with a V-rack. Using your sharp knife, score the duck’s skin in a diamond pattern, again being very careful not to pierce the meat. Wrap the legs together at the ankle, securing with kitchen twine and tuck the wings under the duck. Season liberally with kosher salt. Pour yourself a glass of wine, and roast duck for 1 hour.
After the first hour, remove duck from the oven, poke skin all over, flip so that the breast is now facing down, return to the oven for 1 hour, and pour a new glass of wine.
After the second hour, repeat the poke-flip-wine routine so that the breast is now facing up. Roast for 1 hour.
During this time, transfer the potatoes to a pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil at high heat. Once boiling, reduce heat and allow to simmer for 4 minutes. Drain and rinse the potatoes under cold water, vigorously shaking them in the colander to rough up the edges. This extra step will ensure that your potatoes remain fluffy on the inside with a crisp exterior.
After the third hour, remove duck from the oven. Lifting the V-rack (this may require a second set of hands) add potatoes, smashed garlic, salt and a drizzle of olive oil to the roasting pan, stirring well to incorporate. Return V-rack to the roasting pan and again, poke-flip so that the breast is now facing down. Roast for 1 hour.
After the fourth hour, increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees. Remove duck from oven, stir potatoes and repeat one final poke-flip-wine. With the breast now facing up, roast duck for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and allow duck to rest for about 10 minutes before carving. Serve alongside roasted potatoes —and more wine, of course.