Last Friday, after a day of domesticity – dusting, hoovering, bathroom cleaning, making more cushion covers… I decided to make a nice salad for dinner. I love a nice salad, it is one of my favourite meals to have. A nice big bowl of mixed leaves, usually with a few other bits and bobs to fill it out a bit to make a main meal.
Sometimes I like to have griddled chicken, or salmon and often like having griddled halloumi cheese for a salty tang but in this one I used torn mozzarella and decided to do some tea smoked duck strips.
I’ve posted about tea smoking before when I did a buffet style dinner party before Christmas, I did some thinly sliced chicken breast back then, but thought about doing the duck while I was doing the online shop earlier in the week. I figured that the thin strips wouldn’t take long to cook using this method and would be a little different.
I got a lovely bag of mixed leaves and fennel tops – Steve’s Leaves salad bags have been on offer via Ocado for a while now so been making the most of them. I tastefully arranged it in a large dish, along with slices of cucumber, radish, tomato and some nice ripe melon and strawberries (I LOVE having strawberries in a salad!)
Then I sorted out my little smokery – got my grill pan and lined it with two layers of foil and put a mixture of dried rice, soft brown sugar and emptied about four Earl Grey teabags into it. I then put the grill tray in with more foil on with a few holes pierced through. I put the grill pan over a ring on my gas hob on a low heat and waited until it started smoking. I coated the duck strips with a little olive oil and when ready put them on the grill tray and covered the whole lot in yet more foil. I had the overhead extractor fan on, every window open but the house still smelled of smoke for about a day!
I left them under for about 7 minutes and they were perfect. A delicate smoky flavour and went really well with the fennel tops in the salad. Lovely on a warm spring evening with a glass of sparkling water with raspberry and lemon cordial and a wedge of lime! Left to coat liberally with the dressing of your choice!
The only downside (other than the smell of smoke in the house for a while) was that when clearing up and getting rid of the foil that the smoke residue on the foil stained my fingers yellow. But almost gone now!