A Recipe for Wild Duck and Squash Curry

A winter meal to warm your bones

wild duck and squash curry
The finished duck and squash curry.Jamie Carlson

It’s no secret that I am a cold weather guy. I love the fall and the winter, and enjoy being outside in weather that makes most people stay inside. Yes, the hunting and the ice fishing have something to do with it, but it’s not just those things. I love spending a day in the woods or out in the swamp. Not just because I get to pursue game, but because at the end of every day, or morning, or even after just a couple of hours outside, I always feel more energized.

That might seem like an odd thing to say. Anyone who has ever walked fields all day chasing pheasants or push-pulled a duck boat through a swamp is usually worn out. But along with that worn out feeling comes an energy that makes me feel great at the end of the day. It makes the scotch taste better and the stew more fulfilling. It’s almost as if it heightens all my senses and makes me enjoy everything a little bit more than I usually would.

So I guess you could say the cold weather just seems to make things taste better. Some of my favorite foods in the world I only enjoy in the fall and winter months. A hearty venison stew with a hunk of crusty bread covered with salted butter won’t do on a hot summer’s day. And neither will this duck and squash curry. It’s a very fragrant and hearty dish with a decent amount of spice, all balanced out by the sweetness of the squash. Although I prefer it, you don’t have to use duck—you could use venison or even beef.

duck curry paste
Wild duck meat with red curry paste.Jamie Carlson

Duck and Squash Curry

INGREDIENTS 2 lbs duck, cut into 1 inch cubes 2 tablespoons sesame oil 3 clove garlic 1 tablespoon minced ginger salt pepper 1 can coconut milk ¼ cup red curry paste 1 tsp fish sauce 1 tablespoon soy sauce 2 tablespoons palm sugar or brown sugar 1/4 cup major greys chutney ( or any chutney you have on hand) 4 cups butternut squash cubed

browned wild duck meat
Wild duck makes for a great curry dish, but you can substitute any wild or domestic game.Jamie Carlson

METHOD Heat oil and brown the meat, adding salt and pepper to taste. Once the meat is browned, add garlic and ginger. Cook for a few minutes then add coconut milk, curry paste, fish sauce, soy sauce, and palm sugar.  Stir together and simmer for 30 minutes. Stir in the squash and chutney and simmer for 30 more minutes. Serve over rice

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