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Richard Rudisill

- Richard Rudisill

Duck Dynasty

Posted: Friday, Mar. 01, 2013

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Chef Troy Gagliardo

CChef Troy Gagliardo is a self-taught chef that has parlayed his years of kitchen experience into many other culinary ventures. Including a proprietary spice line, cook books, commercials, food styling, cooking/restaurant columns, endorsements, cooking classes, and live appearances. Troy has been voted as one of the Charlotte’s Top Five Chefs two years in a row by Creative Loafing readers. Chef Troy has appeared in two national commercials with NASCAR legend Dale Earnhardt Jr. and joined him for a media tour day just days before Dale Jr. won his second Daytona 500 to start the 2014 NASCAR season. For the past seven years, Chef Troy has appeared each week on Charlotte's morning show WCCB News Rising, cooking his way through "Troy’s Everyday Eats". Filmed live each week at the WCCB Charlotte studios, Chef Troy teaches his unique style of food with a simple Warren publishing recently signed Chef Troy to publish his new cookbook entitled Pseudo Southern-a playful twist on the art of southern cooking, which has been endorsed by Top Chef Alum and best-selling author Fabio Viviani and also star of “A Chef’s Life” Vivian Howard. Fabio said of Pseudo Southern, "Southern food is my second home. It's as close to my heart like Italy is, and that is why I love Troy's recipes so much. They remind me of the childhood I would have had if I was born in the south”. Vivian had this to say, “Troy’s take on southern food is just left of center, fun, and refreshing. His recipes are approachable that even the most jaded cook will be intrigued to try.” Chef Troy is also a free-lance food writer for the Charlotte Observer and Examiner.com and lives in Mooresville, NC with his wife Tracy, of twenty-three years, and their two daughters, Ally and Isabella. He can be seen every Tuesday morning from 7-9 am on WCCB News Rising.

There is only one thing better than pork and that my friends is...duck fat. You see, to some folks duck is like a flying pig. No, not the way it looks, but the way it tastes. Duck is loaded with fat and if treated just right that fat can be rendered and used in many other applications.

The general consensus is that the average home cook is a bit fearful when attempting to cook duck. It may be because of a bad experience eating duck, or it could possibly be the stereotype that duck is hard to cook. If that be the case here are a few tips to help you muster the courage to master the duck.

1. Start with just the breast of the duck to get a feel for cooking with duck. (Gain confidence)
2. Use a sharp knife to score or slice just through the skin to allow the fat to slowly cook out of the duck. (Natural basting and crispy skin)
3. Use an iron skillet, or oven safe pan, to sear the duck breast gently over medium heat before finishing in the oven. (Even cooking)
4. Don’t overcook. Unlike chicken, duck can be eaten medium to medium rare. (Tender, tasty meat)
5. Let duck rest at least 10/15 minutes before slicing to allow the juices to firm up and stay in. (Juicy)

There you have it, simple enough right? If you follow these few simple techniques you will become a master at cooking duck in no time. Remember to reserve the duck fat and use it for such things like croutons, dressings and even to sear a whole chicken before roasting/ basting slowly in the oven.

Braised Duck Quesadillas with Caramelized Onion and Taleggio Cheese


• 2 Each Duck Quarters
• To Taste-Kosher Salt/Black Pepper
• 2 Tablespoons-Olive Oil
• 1 Each-Carrot-rough chopped
• 1 Blub-Fresh Garlic-halved across cloves
• 1 Each-Celery Stalk-rough chopped
• 2 Tablespoons-Red Wine Vinegar
• To Top-Chicken Stock


• 1 Medium Size Onion-skin removed, sliced thin into half moons
• 1 Tablespoon-Unsalted Butter
• To Taste Salt/Pepper
• ½ Pound-Taleggio Cheese-softened to room temperature, or substitute brie, camembert
• 1 Pint-Grape Tomatoes-tossed with olive oil, salt/pepper, roast at 300 until softened, about 10 minutes
• 12 Each-Flour Tortillas-6 inch size
• To Taste-Sour Cream


1 Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2 Season duck leg with blackened seasoning.
3 Warm oil in an iron skillet over medium heat.
4 Add duck skin side down and cook for until skin is golden and crispy, about 3 minutes.
5 Flip, repeat and remove duck.
6 Drain off all but about 2 tablespoons of fat.
7 Add veg and cook to slightly brown, about 2 minutes.
8 Add a ½ cup of stock and stir, scraping bit of bottom of pan.
9 Add vinegar, stir and duck back to pot.
10 Top off with stock leaving top of the duck (skin) exposed.
11 Place in oven and braise until tender, about 2 hours.
12 Remove from oven, remove duck quarter and let cool enough to handle.
13 Remove skin, discard, pick meat off the bone and shred.
14 Warm butter in a non-stick pan over medium heat and add onions.
15 Cook, stirring frequently until softened and golden brown.
16 Season to taste with salt/pepper and set aside to cool.
17 Lay six tortillas on a work surface in horizontal a row.
18 Equally distribute cheese on each tortilla by smearing with a spreading knife.
19 Top half the tortillas each with a little duck, caramelized onion and roasted tomatoes.
20 Top each tortillas with the filling with remaining tortillas that are smeared with cheese.
21 Heat a non-stick skillet/grill/griddle to medium high heat.
22 Brush the top tortilla with a little olive oil and place oil side down in pan/grill/griddle.
23 Brush top tortilla with a little olive oil and cook until tortilla is slightly brown, about 2 minutes.
24 Flip and cook until golden brown and filling is warmed through, about 2 minutes.
25 Remove and repeat with remaining quesadillas.
26 Cut quesadillas into quarters and serve with sour cream on the side.

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