There's nothing like a Traeger for roasting duck perfectly. Not only will you achieve moist meat and beautifully browned, crisp skin, but you completely avoid the problems oven roasting brings: splattered, smoking fat, and the urgent need to clean the oven and reset the smoke alarm. Be sure to put a fresh piece of foil on your drip pan and clean the grease bucket before beginning so you'll be able to capture that glorious duck fat that is prized by savvy cooks for frying potatoes.
- 1 duck (5 to 6 pounds), defrosted if frozen
- Traeger Pork and Poultry Shake, or salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 small onion, peeled and quartered
- 1 orange, quartered
- Fresh herbs, such as parsley, sage, or rosemary
1. Remove the giblets and discard or save for another use. Trim any loose skin at the neck and remove excess fat from around the main cavity. Remove the wingtips if desired. Wash the duck under cold running water, inside and out, and dry with paper towels. Prick the skin all over with the tip of a knife or the tines of a fork; do not pierce the meat. This helps to render the fat and crisp the skin.
2. Season the bird, inside and out, with Traeger Pork and Poultry Shake. Tuck the onion, orange, and fresh herbs into the cavity. Tie the legs together with butcher's string.
3. When ready to cook, start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (4 to 5 minutes). Set the temperature to 325 degrees F and preheat, lid closed, for 10 to 15 minutes.
4. Arrange the duck directly on the grill grate. Roast for 2-1/2 to 3 hours, or until the skin is brown and crisp and the internal temperature of the thigh when read on an instant-read meat thermometer is 160 degrees. If the duck is not browned to your liking, increase the heat to 375 and roast for several minutes at the higher temperature.
5. Tent the duck loosely with foil and allow it to rest for 15 minutes. Remove the butcher's string and carve.