Slow-cooker Duck with Orange

In this classic recipe, the tart citrus flavours cut through the richness of the duck. It isn't absolutely essential to brown the duck first, but taking this extra step does develop the flavour and renders off some of the excess fat. Alternatively, you could cook the duck to the end of step 2, then cut it into quarters and brown them in a non-stick pan. Serve with a mixed leaf salad.

Slow-cooker Duck with Orange


  • 2 kg duck
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 carrot, halved
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh marjoram
  • 3⁄4 cup (180 ml) orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest
  • 3 teaspoons chicken stock powder
  • 1⁄4 cup (60 ml) madeira
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 3 teaspoons cornflour


  1. Season the duck all over with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Heat the oil over medium–high heat and brown the duck all over, either in your slow cooker, if it has a browning option, or in a large frying pan. Remove the duck to a plate and discard the fat.
  2. Place the onion, garlic, carrot, bay leaf and marjoram in the slow cooker. Combine the orange juice, orange zest, stock powder, madeira and honey, then add to the slow cooker and mix to combine. Place the duck on top. Cover and cook on low for 6–8 hours.
  3. Carefully remove the duck from the slow cooker to a warm platter. Cover loosely with foil to keep warm. Discard the carrot from the cooking juices, then remove the excess fat from the top of the sauce.
  4. Mix the cornflour with enough cold water to make a smooth paste, then stir into the cooking juices. Replace the lid, increase the heat to high and cook for a further 10–15 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened slightly. Season to taste.
  5. Carve the duck into quarters and arrange on warm plates. Drizzle with the sauce and serve.

In the oven
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Follow step 1 as above, browning the duck in a flameproof casserole dish on the stovetop. Follow step 2 and gently bring to a boil. Cover with the lid, transfer to the oven and bake for 2 hours. Continue as directed in steps 3 to 5.

Serves: 4
Preparation: 10 minutes
Cooking: 6-8 hours
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