Many of us enjoy the products of the hunting done by our husbands, brothers or sons. It is wonderful to have a lovely supply of duck in the freezer, but sometimes our “mental menu maker” runs dry, and we can’t think of new ways to use that treasured duck. Not to worry, one of Avoyelles favorite hunters is also one of our best cooks. Dr. Willie Elmer, of Moncla, who taught mathematics to several generations of Avoyelles youth, is also an avid hunter, fisherman and gardener. Mr. Willie also offers one of the most delicious recipes ever, which he uses to cook duck for appreciative diners. He is always willing to cook for audiences at the Avoyelles Commission of Tourism Office. He skillfully demonstrates how to prepare ingredients for, and to cook, one of our favorite dishes. Moncla Rice Dressing Avec Canard (with duck), has become a very much acclaimed presenter at ACT events. Mr. Willie grows the onions, peppers, garlic and carrots used in the recipe, and happily hunts for the duck (canard). Then he skillfully prepares an old Avoyelles favorite, rice dressing, with his own twist: with duck added (avec canard). Try this delicious dish, and if you like it as much as our office does, please let us know, and we will pass the comments along to Mr. Willie.
1 Pound Ground Duck (or Duck Hearts or Gizzards)
1 Pound Commercial Dressing Mix
1 Pound Ground Pork
4 Cups Cooked Rice
3-5 Medium Onions (3 of Them Finely Chopped, 2 Quartered)
1-3 Carrots, Cut Into Chunks
5-6 Cloves Whole Garlic, Quartered
2 Large Red Peppers, Finely Chopped
3/4 Cup Green Onions, Chopped
Fresh Green Parsley, Chopped, To Taste
1 Tablespoons Chopped Garlic
1 (6.5 Ounces) Can Sliced Mushrooms
Debone raw duck and grind meat. Make duck stock: cover duck carcasses with room temperature water just to cover. Add 1 or 2 onions, quartered, unpeeled; 5 to 6 cloves garlic, unpeeled, quartered; and carrots, unpeeled, cut into chunks. Bring mixture to a boil, lower heat and simmer for 1 to 8 hours, as time permits. Season stock to taste with salt and pepper. Strain stock as needed for recipe. Cook rice in duck stock rather than water. While rice is cooking, slowly brown duck, pork and dressing mix. When meats are about half done, add chopped onions, bell peppers, garlic, mushrooms, salt and pepper to taste. Add duck stock if additional moisture is needed. When onions are cooked and clear, add cooked rice, green onions, parsley, and additional seasoning, if required.
Willie Elmer offers his Universal Recipe for Cooking Anything: “It’s all you need to know! Season to taste, cook until done.”