Christmas Duck Disaster

We had the YAMEN participants over for Christmas day dinner. We have two volunteers from Kenya and one from Indonesia. I had planned to roast duck (my first) for dinner…but it did not go so well.

As I roasted two ducks for dinner one of them began to emit a putrid stench. This became worse the longer the duck roasted. I don’t know why the smell wasn’t evident before roasting but it was clear two hours in that the duck was a bad duck. Unfortunately, the raw ducks had been cleaned together and put in the same bag at the market. So I didn’t feel like I could serve the non-putrid duck due to cross contamination.

Crystal to the rescue. She looked at the food I was preparing. Braised Red Cabbage and Onions, Long Beans, her family’s traditional Pineapple Stuffing, and a small can of Cranberry sauce. Then she told me to run out and buy two kilograms of pork. She swiftly saved dinner by making a delicious pork dish.

We had a wonderful time with the YAMEN participants. After dinner, we sat around the fireplace (okay – just a fire on a screen) drinking warm milk (I had soy milk) with Christmas cookies and candy canes. The discussion was just wonderful. We talked about Cambodian, Kenyan, and Indonesian cultural/politics. For example… What are the indigenous fruit of Kenya? Is there really such a thing as Indonesian food? What do contemporary generational divides look like inCambodia/Kenya/Indonesia?

I think that I’ll try duck again… But I’ll get it very fresh. There’s a market in northern Phnom Penh where you can select poultry and they’ll butcher for you on the spot.

6 Comments Add yours

  1. Homer Wood says:

    Well, that was exciting!

    1. Charles says:

      The smell certainly was!

  2. Nancy Sharpe says:

    Whew! What a day! But it sounds like the right call! Pork to the rescue.

  3. glendalandis says:

    I am so glad your Christmas story had a happy ending!

    1. Charles says:

      Thank you – Crystal to the rescue!

  4. Hodges says:

    Ahhh…putrid duck. That’s what you get for being carnivorous … 🙂 🙂

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