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Three-Ingredient Duck

Recipe by: Jonathan Bowman

Here’s a three-ingredient recipe I came up with a couple years ago. If you are serving to people with “delicate” stomachs, I would remove the feet. Otherwise, I keep the feet because it reminds me this was a living being at one point, and it makes a great handle.

Some of my friends still claim the first time we tried this recipe was the best duck they have ever eaten.


1 Or more plucked duck(s) cut into halves (keep the feet on for a handle unless feeding the squeamish. Use a filet knife to remove the breast and leg as one piece.
-½ tablespoonButter per duck
Chinese five-spice seasoning  (found usually in most grocery stores at the spice aisle)
Red pepper flakes (a sprinkling of flakes  for each duck)
2 tablespoonSoy sauce

How to Prepare

Heat a cast iron on medium-high heat. Add at least 1/2 tablespoon of butter per duck. I also cut off the plucked tail of the duck and add it with the butter to render some of the fat out. Most of the time we fight over who gets to eat the charred fatty tails.

While the pan is heating up, season each duck with a light salting, pepper, Chinese five-spice seasoning, and red pepper flakes. This can be done with any choice eating duck really. Size, of course, varies greatly between birds. You are aiming for a dusting of seasoning so that the magnificent flavor of the bird still comes through.

Pour some soy sauce in the butter (1-2 tablespoons or as you prefer).

Add the duck halves and sear for three minutes on the first side, followed by two to three minutes on the second side. Go a little longer the bigger the bird.

Give the meat three to five minutes to rest and dig in! The juices that collect on the resting plate are nice to dip in as well.