|Laotian Garlic Duck with Jasmine Rice|
Located in Southeast Asia, Laos is a landlocked country that is bordered by Burma, The People's Republic of China, Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand.
Laotian cuisine is distinct from other Southeast Asian countries because it's influenced by several Thai provinces as well as Cambodia. Moreover, there is a significant French tradition found in Laos, especially in less rural areas, where baguettes and French fusion restaurants are common place.
|Two heads of garlic make the fragrant paste|
|Turmeric flavors and colors the dish a beautiful golden hue|
|Browned duck - say no more|
|Cilantro and lime put the final touch on the dish|
Garlic Duck and Rice (adapted from Global Gourmet)
- 2 cups jasmine rice
- 2 whole heads garlic, cloves separated and peeled
- 2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
- 1 tsp. sea salt, or to taste
- 1 tablespoon ground turmeric
- 3 tablespoons nam pla (fish sauce)
- 4 duck boneless duck breasts or one 4-5 lb. duck, cut into serving sizes, excess fat trimmed
- Fresh cilantro, chopped for garnish
- Lime wedges for serving
- Put the rice a strainer and rinse well, then soak in cold water to cover.
- Meanwhile put the garlic, pepper, salt, turmeric and nam pla into a food processor and process until the garlic is pasty and ingredients are well incorporated - scrape sides as needed.
- Place a deep skillet or flameproof casserole with a lid over medium-high heat. Add the duck, skin side down, and brown well, adjusting the heat and turning so that pieces are evenly browned - about 5-7 minutes if using duck breast, 10-15 minutes if using a cut up duck. Transfer to plate when done, and pour off all but a couple of tablespoons of the fat.
- Add the garlic paste to the skillet and cook, stirring constantly until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Return dug to the pan and stir to coat wit the sauce.
- Add 3-1/2 cups water to the pan with the duck and bring to a boil. Drain the rice and slowly stir into the pan. Bring the water to a boil again, cover, turn the heat to medium-low, and simmer until the rice cooked through, about 20 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the duck and rice mixture sit for 10 minutes. Garnish with chopped cilantro and lime wedges.
Final Assessment: What can I say? Duck, jasmine rice, turmeric, garlic, cilantro and lime...heaven.