Emeril’s Duck & Wild Mushroom Gumbo — Twitter Avatar Fun

A number of my cooking/baking friends and I decided to spice up 2011 by cooking a new recipe each month from a chef chosen by one of us. We pick our own recipe by that month’s chef, prepare it, and use a picture of the results as our Twitter avatar for the month. For this moth’s Twitter avatar, Margaret decided we would all make recipes by Emeril Lagasse.

I’m no stranger to Emeril. I haven’t made many of his recipes, but my go-to King Cake and bread pudding are both based in large part on his recipes. So choosing an Emeril recipe for March was fine by me. The trouble was narrowing it down to just one recipe. In the end I settled on one of my favorite foods made with ingredients I’d never used in it before.

Click here for Emeril’s duck and wild mushroom gumbo recipe. It may look complicated, but like all gumbos, it mainly just takes time. And once you’ve butchered and browned the duck and made your roux, most of the work is behind you.

Duck fat, oil, and flour cooking away to make roux. It's not done yet.


Once it hits the right level of doneness (coffee-colored), it's ready.


Quick! Add the Trinity before the roux scorches.


Lots of spices, including Essence and extra cayenne for good measure.


'Shrooms, 'shrooms, and more 'shrooms! I used six kinds of mushrooms -- morel, oyster, protabella, crimini, chanterelle, & shitake.


Mix it all together, add the browned duck and broth, and simmer for 1 1/2 hours.


Oh yeah. That's what I'm talkin' about.


Picture perfect and good enough to eat.

 So, from a self-proclaimed gumbo expert — having made and tried many, many different gumbos in my time, both here and in NOLA — I have to say that this was among the best gumbo I have ever eaten. I had two big bowls for dinner and could easily have had one or two more. It was spicy, but not overly so, and the duck was rich and flavorful without the slightest bit of gaminess to it. My kids are fairly adventurous eaters, but I didn’t know how they would do with duck and the spiciness of the dish. But they both loved it.

I may have made this one with the picture in mind, but I’ll keep making it with my belly in mind. Bam!



  1. Margaret said,

    March 15, 2011 at 9:24 pm

    After you butcher a duck!!! Did you, really???

    Love Gumbo (DUH) and this one looks Divine. (Just cannot use that line enough!!)

    Have to try this one one day.

    • gaaarp said,

      March 15, 2011 at 9:28 pm

      Well, butcher in the sense that I broke it down. It’s not like I plucked feathers or anything. I have been eating this for three days, and I’m not tired of it yet. Luckily, it’s impossible to make a small batch of gumbo!

  2. Abby said,

    March 14, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    You make this sound so delicious! Although you have me a little freaked out by this comment: “And once you’ve butchered and browned the duck and made your roux, most of the work is behind you.” =)

    • gaaarp said,

      March 14, 2011 at 7:13 pm

      It’s not like I chopped off its head and plucked feathers. All I did was broke it down — removed the spine, cut it in half, then pieced it out. Basically like breaking down a chicken. I suppose if one were squeamish, the butcher would probably do the dirty work for you.

      I have a rabbit recipe I’m wanting to ty. It calls for deboning the rabbit, but you use the bones for the sauce. I might use the butcher’s service for that one.

  3. Kayte said,

    March 14, 2011 at 6:35 am

    Wow that looks fabulous, seriously good stuff. Actually you had me at the mushrooms but then the duck added in just carried it over the top. The process photos are so great, I think I have looked at them all three times already and I’m figuring it’s just a matter of time until I figure I should jump in on this one…thanks for picking it! Last month I tried to make everyone’s avatar recipes but did not get to a couple of them. Trying again this month to do that as well. I’m loving chef avatar months so far!

    • gaaarp said,

      March 14, 2011 at 7:10 pm

      OK, but don’t leave your duck in the fridge for more than 2 days, or I’ll have to reprimand you!

  4. March 13, 2011 at 10:09 pm

    That gumbo looks delectable. Way to go all out for a twitter avatar picture, Phyl!

    • gaaarp said,

      March 13, 2011 at 10:57 pm

      Always willing to do my part! Oh, yeah, and I LOVE gumbo!!!

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