The Gourmet version of Turducken
The barbecue culture is soaked in America to the marrow and it is inevitable that it is so. In the process of migrating recipes to our daily lives, however, not everything has had the same popular grip. Maybe you remember when we talked about Whole Hog, and we had made a miniature version, using a suckling pig, certainly more within our habits. For different reasons, but another recipe that is all the rage overseas but little success to us is the Turducken. Do you know him? Basically it is a turkey, which contains a duck, which in turn contains a chicken. The result is a sort of stuffed roast in layers. Maybe a little extravagant for us, is not it? It seems straight out of an episode of Man vs Food …. But what about trying to create a gourmet version? Something that we could present in a gala evening, maybe even at Christmas, with a matching of more refined and precious flavors.
To begin with, once again we had to reduce the sizes: we need monoportions or about. Then I opted for meats with a more particular flavor that allow us to combine some most refined taste. I started from size: if it should be single-portioned, we wanted something smaller than a chicken and I chose a partridge, a meat that I find very refined, especially if cooked on the grill. Among the birds that could be contained in it, for size and taste I chose a Quail. This latter I like very much when stuffed. I thought so to make a sort of raw duck tartare as the last stage of our dish and flavored with truffles that also marries very well with both Quail and Partridge. Our mini Turducken is therefore essentially a stuffing of Duck tartare (Duck), inside a Quail (Quail), inside a Partridge (Patridge): the Duquatridge was born!
2 Red Patridges
1 Duck leg
1 little Black Truffle
6 slices of loaf bread
1 cup of Stock
2 teaspoons of T-Bone rub
1 teaspoon of Oakridge Santa Maria rub
2 spoons of Don Marco’s Wondergreen rub
Let’s start with the most dismal part: the Turducken is basically a stuffed roast with an overlap of types of meat in the slice. Translated: the three types of birds must be deboned before assembling it. It is an operation that is not particularly intuitive and that certainly does not happen every day, which when translated on our single-portion version, could scare. In truth, leading several years of “American Thanksgiving” themed courses in which the day before I deboned all the chickens to give to the students so that they can replicate the recipe of stuffed turkey in small, I can tell you that it is just about practice. You will see that at the end of the preparation of all the necessary meat, the deboning of the last bird will have employed one tenth of what the first one took. For play I timed the deboning time of one of the quails and did not take me more than 4 minutes. In case you have never done it, I’m quoting below the step-by-step instructions.
- Place the bird on its breast and look for the spine with your fingers. With a small boning knife, cut the skin along the spine and then continue trimming the ribcage from the meat. Continue until you get to the joint with the wings and the thighs.
- Lever on the overcoats and wings until the bones come out of the cartilages that bind the joint to the ribcage, so you can separate them more easily with the help of a knife. Do the same on both sides, releasing almost all exposed bones from the flesh.
- If you grasp the rib cage part corresponding to the tail and pull upwards you will notice how it will easily split into two and it will be easy to remove it from the flesh leaving only the part corresponding to the breastbone attached. Now with the boning knife, trim the breastbone on one side and the other until it is completely separated from the flesh
- With one hand hold the bones of the wings and thighs in a vertical position and with the knife trim them from the meat from top to bottom until they are completely cleaned and separated. Repeat the operation on all four limbs so that only the skin with the meat remains on the table. Proceed and trim the outer edges of the skin, those that do not have flesh attached and that usually contain more fat.
The DuquatridgePatridge, Quail, and truffled Duck Roast
Separate the meat from the skin, you can easily do it by hand, otherwise help yourself with a knife to trim the more tenacious conjunctions. If even a little fat remains on the meat is not bad, it will contribute to the taste and moisture of the filling.
Chop the duck leg with a knife until you obtain a kind of coarse tartare. Now grate over the truffle and mix with your hands until you have a homogeneous mixture
Add to the bread cut into cubes, the dripping fat, the rub and a tablespoon at a time the amount of broth that serves to create a compact and homogeneous mixture.
Now place the Quail with the skin on the Partridge in a symmetrically opposite position. To be clear, the quail side of the tail must correspond to that of the Partridge’s head and vice versa. Now saturate the interstices of Quaglia with the mixture, as you did with the Partridge before.
Form an elongated shape with the stuffing of duck and truffle and add it to the middle of the Quail.
Now join the flaps of the Partridge skin to enclose the contents inside and with the help of a needle and a thin white thread, sew them together from the bottom upwards to give a regular, compact and stable shape to the Duquatridge
The last step is to apply a bit of Oakridge Santa Maria on the dry surface and place the Duquatridge on an uncovered plate, in the fridge for about 1 hour. The stop in the fridge will cool and compote the mixture and the meat, so that the slice of Duquatridge will remain whole without breaking down when we are going to slice and serve. The rub on the skin will tend to dehydrate it, making it easily dry and crispy at any cooking temperature
I would say that the recipe turned out to be a success, certainly suitable for the holiday period or an important dinner. The Duquatridge has proved to be a dish with intense and full contrasts, certainly very aromatic but in which the particularity of the meat is still recognizable. Perhaps I find it more suitable to make an appetizer than a main dish, perhaps paired by an onions chutney and an Alsatian Gewurtztraminer.