For those who think everything tastes like chicken, there's now a duck that tastes like steak. The Challans, a 400-year-old breed once served to French kings, is making its American debut this fall. Made famous by Paris's La Tour d'Argent restaurant, the duck is known for its robust flavor and exceptionally lean but tender flesh. "It's an animal that goes 'moo' but has wings," says J. Bryce Whittlesey, executive chef at Wheatleigh in Lenox, Mass., who worked with duck grower Robert Rosenthal of New York's Stone Church Farm to re-create the breed in the United States. New York City's Picholine (212-724-8585) and Wheatleigh (wheatleigh.com) have both added the Challans to their menus, and Whole Foods may sell it later this year. Until then, diners can order the three-pound ducks fresh or dry-aged online ($21.95 plus shipping; stonechurchfarm.com). Whittlesey recommends roasting the bird whole, stuffed with apple or quince, and serving it with turnips sauteed in butter and white-truffle honey. No sweet tooth? Kill the stuffing and serve with sides of farro, a grain, and broccoli rabe.
Join the Discussion