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Swiss-style Duck Pie

  • Preparation : 45 minutes
  • Cooking : 184 minutes
  • Portions : 4
pâté suisse


  • 1 whole duck from Brome Lake Ducks
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • For the onion soup:
  • 3 medium onions, sliced
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) garlic, minced
  • 30 ml (2 tbsp) maple syrup
  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) balsamic vinegar
  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) white wine
  • 5 ml (1 tsp) freshly chopped thyme
  • 750 ml (3 cups) duck or veal stock
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • For the pie:
  • 300 g (2/3 de lb) pie pastry
  • 375 ml (1½ cup) Swiss cheddar, grated


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350°F (180°C).

  2. Place duck with breast side down on a cutting board. Remove the wishbone by making a small cut at the bone near the breasts, then pull out the bone with your fingers. Cut into the skin inside the thighs, then pull out the thighs from the joint and cut into the joint again to detach them. Cut the wings at the shoulder joint to separate them. Cut length-wise from the base of each breast, following the spine and the chest cavity, to remove the breasts. Set aside the wings to use another time.

  3. Pat the duck pieces dry with paper towel. Season with salt and pepper.

  4. Heat a large ovenproof pan over medium heat. Brown the duck pieces for 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Set aside on a plate.

  5. Remove the excess fat from the pan, reserving 30 ml (2 tbsp). Sauté the onions for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until caramelized.

  6. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute.

  7. Add the maple syrup and balsamic vinegar. Continue cooking for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring, until almost all the liquid has evaporated.

  8. Add the white wine and thyme, and simmer until the liquid has reduced by half.

  9. Add the duck stock and bring to a boil. Add the duck pieces and potatoes. Cover and continue cooking in the oven for 2 to 2½ hours until the thigh meat easily comes off the bone.

  10. Remove the duck pieces from the pan and place on a cutting board. Allow to cool.

  11. Bring the contents of the pan to a boil over medium heat, allow to reduce by half, until a syrupy textured is obtained.

  12. Meanwhile, remove the skin from the pieces of duck meat. Shred the leg meat and cut the breasts into cubes.

  13. Return the meat to the pan. Stir to fully coat with the sauce. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.

  14. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the pie pastry into a 33 cm (13-inch) circle. Place the pastry into a deep 23 cm (9-inch) pie dish.

  15. Add the duck mixture to the pie dish and top with the cheese.

  16. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour until the pastry is golden brown.

  17. Set the oven to broil. Continue cooking for 2 to 3 minutes, until the cheese is golden brown.

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