Yes, bacon traditionally comes from a pig, but you’ve heard of turkey bacon and soy bacon … why not duck bacon? The first time I made ground jerky, it occurred to me that it looked just like bacon. So into the skillet it went.
Recipe: Duck Bacon
To make your own duck bacon, mix ground duck with desired seasonings or as directed in the duck-jerky recipe (below). Portion out several raw “bacon” strips and par-freeze on greased baking sheets. Remove from freezer, vacuum seal in a single layer or lay between sheets of plastic wrap. These will be ready to cook right from the refrigerator or freezer.
This is a healthy breakfast alternative to real bacon. It’s low in fat and free of nitrates and preservatives.
When ready to cook, simply heat peanut, olive or coconut oil in a skillet on medium-high heat. Fry 1 to 2 minutes per side.
Ground Duck Jerky
Traditionally, jerky is made from strips cut with the grain or round pieces cut cross-grain. Jerky made from ground meat is another method. Ground-meat jerky can be made by hand by rolling out the meat with a rolling pin and slicing it into desired portions. But the job is made easy with a jerky gun, which operates much like a caulking gun. With this method, ground meat is stuffed into a cylinder and pressed out into perfect, uniform strips directly onto smoker or oven racks.
Jerky can be cooked in a smoker, oven or food dehydrator. The key is to avoid drying out the meat by overcooking it. To be properly cooked, the meat must reach 165 degrees .
2 pounds ground duck
2 teaspoons canning salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon granulated/powdered garlic
- Skin ducks and remove all breast, leg and thigh meat cleanly from bones, tendons and ligaments.
- Grind ducks on finest grinder plate or pulse in a food processor until ground. Add remaining ingredients and stir well.
- Refrigerate 12 to 24 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Set up jerky gun and grease racks with cooking spray.
- Place cold meat in jerky gun and squeeze out strips to desired length. It’s helpful to use the spine of a knife to stop the flow of meat from the end of the jerky gun.
- Place racks in a pre-heated 165- to 170 degrees oven or smoker for 45 minutes.
- Remove racks, flip jerky strips and return to the oven or smoker for an additional 45 minutes or until jerky reaches desired doneness/texture. When making jerky in a food dehydrator, follow manufacturer’s instructions for drying meat.
- Refrigerate or vacuum seal and freeze jerky for long-term storage.
Related: A Forgotten Delicacy: Racoon