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FRICOT INDIGENOUS: Local Food, Traditional Recipes, and Sustainable Food Security Solutions

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In this article, we explore different versions of a classic duck dish. From an adaptation of a rustic 14th-century French recipe to modern interpretations, we’ll delve into the variations and techniques to create a delicious meal. Join us on this culinary journey!

Version 1: Rediscovering the Rustic Flavors

In her book, Recipes of all Nations, Marcelle Morphy shares an adaptation of a quaint original recipe from Le Grand Cuisinier de Toute Cuisine, a French culinary masterpiece from the 14th century. Unfortunately, this rustic version has been overshadowed by a more elaborate boned variation popularized by Prosper Montagne in his Larousse Gastronomique. Let’s uncover the essence of Countess Morphy’s Dodine de Canard.


  • 2 kg duck, jointed into 8 pieces
  • 600 ml dry red wine
  • 250 g mushrooms, quartered
  • 200 g onions, sliced
  • 100 ml brandy
  • 30 ml olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • Handful of parsley
  • 1 sprig of thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Large pinch of salt
  • Large pinch of pepper


  1. Marinate the duck pieces with brandy, onions, wine, salt, and pepper. Let it sit for three hours.
  2. Strain the marinade liquid and pat the duck pieces dry.
  3. Sear the duck pieces in olive oil over high heat in a heavy-based saucepan. Add the marinade liquid, herbs, garlic, and mushrooms.
  4. Reduce the heat and simmer for 60 minutes.
  5. Serve the duck with the cooking liquid and a selection of vegetables.
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Version 2: The Boned and Stuffed Delight

This adaptation explores a boned and stuffed version of the duck dish.


  • 2 kg duck
  • 1 liter broth
  • 250 g fatty bacon/pork belly (half fat-half flesh), finely chopped
  • 250 g pork tenderloin, finely chopped
  • 250 g veal, finely chopped
  • 250 g white mushrooms, chopped
  • Duck liver, chopped
  • 2 eggs
  • 45 g ground almonds
  • 1 slice of fresh foie gras (optional)
  • 45 ml brandy/cognac
  • 15 g + 5 g salt
  • 15 g butter
  • 10 g ground mixed spices (caraway, cinnamon, cloves, fennel)
  • 5 g + 5 g black pepper
  • 5 parsley stalks with leaves, chopped
  • 5 sage leaves, chopped


  1. Carefully debone the duck, keeping the skin intact. Cut the flesh into small pieces, reserving the breasts.
  2. Marinate the strips of duck breast in brandy or cognac, along with half of the ground spices. Refrigerate for 24 hours. Season the skin on both sides.
  3. Sauté the duck liver in butter for a few minutes, then let it cool.
  4. Combine the bacon, pork loin, veal, duck flesh, liver, and spices. Add the almonds, eggs, mushrooms, parsley, and sage. Mix the ingredients thoroughly.
  5. Spread the mixture over the duck skin. Place the marinated breast strips on top. Fold and tie the skin tightly.
  6. Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Place the duck in a casserole dish, pour in the broth and the marinade liquid, and cook for approximately two hours, basting occasionally.
  7. Allow the duck to rest for a few minutes before removing the string.
  8. For a cold variation, cool the duck in the liquid, remove the string, and cover it with the resulting jelly. Refrigerate for at least 24 hours.
  9. Serve the cold duck sliced, accompanied by a fresh salad.
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Version 3: A Modern Twist

In this version, we present a contemporary interpretation of the classic duck dish.


  • 3 x 350 g duck fillets, skinned
  • 250 g duck liver, sliced
  • 200 g pork loin, chopped
  • 200 g veal, chopped
  • 150 g fat bacon, chopped
  • 130 ml brandy
  • 100 ml white wine
  • 80 g 1-day-old white bread roll
  • 45 ml milk
  • 45 g truffles, sliced (optional)
  • 20 g butter
  • 12 sliced sage leaves
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • Large pinch of black pepper
  • Large pinch of salt
  • 1 pork caul


  1. Slice the duck fillets into 2cm thick slices and marinate them in brandy and seasonings overnight.
  2. Soak the bread roll in milk for 20 minutes, then squeeze out the excess liquid.
  3. In a separate pan, brown the duck liver in butter, then let it cool.
  4. Combine the allspice, bacon, bread, duck, liver, pork, sage, remaining seasonings, and veal in the marinade liquid.
  5. Soak the pork caul in cold water.
  6. Stuff the caul with the meat mixture and tie it with string.
  7. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  8. Place the caul in a baking tray and bake at 160°C for two hours.
  9. Allow the duck to cool in the liquid, then refrigerate for 12 hours before serving.

Version 4: Slow-Cooked Perfection

This version focuses on slow-cooking the duck in broth.


  • 2 liters broth
  • 1.5 kg duck
  • 500 g pork tenderloin, sliced
  • 250 g veal, sliced
  • Sliced duck liver
  • 2 eggs
  • 15 ml brandy
  • 10 g salt
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • Butter (for frying)
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  1. Carefully open the duck from the back and remove the flesh and excess fat while keeping the skin intact. Debone the breasts.
  2. Slice the breast into small strips.
  3. Fry the duck liver in butter for five minutes, then let it cool.
  4. Combine the remaining duck flesh with the liver, pork, veal, allspice, pepper, salt, eggs, and brandy in a large bowl.
  5. Season the spread-out duck skin with pepper and spoon the meat mixture onto the center.
  6. Salt the strips of duck breast and arrange them evenly over the mixture.
  7. Fold and sew the edges of the duck skin, creating a tight seal. Wrap the duck in muslin and tie both ends.
  8. Place the duck in a large pot with the broth. Bring it to a slow boil and simmer for two hours.
  9. Serve the duck hot or cold.

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