September 26th, 2012

Does My Bomb Look Big In This?

Article - Avoiding Fowl Play?

Published in the City Hub, Bondi View and City News.

Cooking anything other than chook seems to get many home cooks into a flap. I remember my mother’s heart palpitations as the annual battle-turkey grew near. We were smart enough not to even mention duck, let alone goose…


To get over my hereditary fear of cooking exotic fowl, I decided to get along to one of Darren Templeman’s masterclasses. Joining an array of foodies and diners in the Restaurant Atelier kitchen, I am surprised to report that far from fearful, I left Duck, Duck Goose actually wanting to tackle duck!

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What made me doubly excited, was that Darren shared the techniques behind a dish I’d actually eaten in his restaurant a month earlier – Caramel & Szechuan Pepper-Glazed Grimauld Duckling Breast with Crisp Confit Leg. Over the course of the class, our small group was shown how to roast a crown, confit duck Marylands and then debone them into a fancy cylinder.


Before long the tantalising aroma of duck in various stages of undress (and redress) filled the room. While you don’t actually pick up a knife until your confit duck and roast goose lunch needs disassembling, you certainly don’t leave Darren’s kitchen hungry - samples abound. It was nice to see producer Beth McMillan from Burrawong Gaian was as keen as I was to sample her own product in Darren's oh-so-capable hands.

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Line up for Darren’s next masterclass, Lamb Lunch, on Sunday 28th October, quickly. For $140/head you’ll learn how to cook a perfectly pink rack of grass-fed Milly Hill Lamb, then get more exotic with a hot and sour Szechuan lamb tartare. Class includes meeting the producer, and a lamb on a spit luncheon.

Restaurant Atelier on Urbanspoon

If boning out still scares you, brush up with Tim Elwin from Urban Food Market first, at Butchery 101 on Saturday 6th October. He’ll teach to butterfly a chook, bone a leg of lamb, and French a rack. You even get a boning knife, glove and all your neatly boned items to take home.