Christmas Portuguese Dinner Food

Portuguese Duck Rice (Arroz de Pato)

December 20, 2021

This Christmas season I wanted to bring a different Christmas dinner recipe for this international community, so I went for the Portuguese duck rice – a yummy dish of crispy rice and tender duck. Hubby and I did it for the very first time, and although it took us hours, I am quite proud of the outcome. These proportions are for a big meal of ten, but worry not if you´re a smaller group, it freezes quite well, so you can do that and enjoy it for the next couple of months. And I personally recommend you do just that, rather than cutting the ingredients, as this recipe takes about three hours to cook and if you´re gonna spend that much time on it, you might as well have duck rice for the full next year to show for it. 🙂

(serves ten)

600g rice
1,5 kg duck chest (some four pieces)
150g regular sausage
150g black sausage
300g bacon
three big onions
one garlic
300 ml tomato sauce
400 ml red wine
one tablespoon pepper grains
one teaspoon cloves
two bay leaves
salt and pepper to taste
half a litre olive oil


1. Add the duck, half of each sausage, and the bacon to a big pot. Add 300 ml of red wine and enough hot water to cover it fully. Add the bay leaves, clove and five cloves of garlic and pepper grains to it. Let it simmer for 1h.

2. After the meat is done, remove duck, sausages and bacon from the pot. Note: leave the water and spices in the pot, you´ll need it all for the rice.

3. Let the meat cool, and once cool start shredding the duck. Chop the sausage and the bacon into small pieces.

4. In another pot, chop the one onion, five cloves of garlic and add half of the previously cooked and chopped sausage and bacon. Fry until golden, add the rice and fry until slightly crispy (about five minutes), then start gradually adding the broth that the meat cooked in. Add it one cup of the time, continuously mixing, until the rice has cooked completely. Make sure the rice is not loose and has a more risotto like consistency. (You´ll probably use almost all of the broth).

5. Chop the last two onions and five cloves of garlic, and add the second half of the chopped sausage and bacon. Fry them with 300 ml olive oil until golden, then add the tomato paste, 100 ml of red wine and the shredded duck. Fry for about five minutes.

6. In a large oven proof tray, start layering. First a layer of rice, then a layer of meat, then another layer of rice. Top if off with the remaining uncooked sausage and let bake for 25 minutes at 220 degrees. And you´re done!

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