Arroz de pato is a traditional Portuguese dish from the Minho region but can be found on restaurant menus and as ready meals in supermarkets all over the country.
It’s a simple dish where the duck is first braised until tender, shredded and mixed with rice that has been cooked in the flavorsome duck stock. The mixture is then topped with slices of chorizo and baked in the oven, resulting in a slightly chewy rice crust and chorizo that is a little crispy around the edges.
The leek, carrot and celery are optional. Obviously the more flavour in the stock the tastier the end result but if you don’t have them to hand don’t worry, there is enough flavour from the duck to still produce a very satisfying dish.
ARROZ DE PATO
(Portuguese duck rice)
1 duck, trimmed of excess fat and jointed
2 large onions, 1 quartered and 1 finely chopped
5 cloves garlic, peeled
1 leek, washed and chopped
1 carrot. chopped
1 stick celery, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon peppercorns
100 g chorizo, sliced
1 large orange, zest and juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
500 g basmati rice
Salt and pepper to taste
orange slices and chopped parsley to serve
Place the duck pieces in a large saucepan, cover with water and add the quartered onion, 2 cloves of garlic, the leek, carrot, celery, 1 bay leaf and the peppercorns.
Bring to the boil then reduce the heat, cover and simmer until the duck is tender, about 45 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to cool for 20 minutes, Remove the duck from the liquid and when cool enough to handle shred the meat, discarding the bones and skin.
Preheat the oven to 200 C/ Gas 6.
Strain the broth and pour 1 litre back into the saucepan. If there is not enough liquid you can top it up with water or chicken stock. Bring back to the boil and keep warm while preparing the rice.
Finely chop the remaining garlic. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan and gently fry the garlic, chopped onion, orange zest and remaining bay leaf, until the onion is translucent.
Add the rice and stir to coat in the oil, fry for a few seconds more before pouring in the reserved stock. Season to taste with salt and pepper, cover and cook for 15 minutes, without stirring, on very low heat.
Remove from heat and allow to stand, covered for 5 minutes, until all of the liquid is absorbed and the rice is cooked but still firm.
Drizzle with the orange juice, add the shredded meat and mix gently.
Transfer the mixture to an ovenproof dish. Smooth over and arrange the chorizo slices on the top.
Bake in the oven for 10 – 15 until the rice is lightly golden on top and the chorizo is a little crispy around the edges.
Sprinkle with chopped parsley and decorate with the orange slices. Serve.