t Soothe that Winter Cold with Freedom Food Duck Soup - Ethical Hedonist Soothe that Winter Cold with Freedom Food Duck Soup - Ethical Hedonist

Soothe that Winter Cold with Freedom Food Duck Soup

November 22, 2013 in Everything Else


Warming Duck Soup LR

This scrumptious Duck soup will help you to beat that nasty winter cold!

There are two absolute truths about winter:

1)  Christmas adverts will start far too early..In Autumn usually
2) You will catch a nasty cold when you need it the least!

Have you already got the sniffles? If you are finding the classic chicken soup to be slightly boring, try this Freedom Food Duck soup recipe instead. It will help to sooth your cold and fight off your hunger pains!

Freedom Food is an RSPCA scheme that governs the highest level of welfare for farming animals. This means that when you buy your Christmas duck you will be guaranteed it had good living conditions and had access to bathing water, something all ducks need but rarely get when intensively farmed. Key standards must be met when rearing an animal for it to attain the Freedom Food symbol.

Look out for Freedom Food labelled duck  in one of your local supermarkets, or ask you supermarket to stock it. All Sainsbury’s own-label duck meat and Tesco’s own label whole duck is Freedom Food labelled.

This recipe also includes known cold fighting veg, such as garlic, onion and mushrooms.

So wrap up warm, snuggle on the sofa with a blanket and beat those sniffles with this gorgeous soup!

SERVES 4-6              

PREP TIME: 20 minutes                 

COOK TIME: 2 hours 30 minutes



  • 1.6 litres of water
  • 1 Freedom Food labelled duck carcase & any spare bones from a roast whole duck, all fat pulled off & discarded
  • Any spare duck meat picked off & reserved
  • 2 small brown onions
  • Parsley stalks
  • 1 small handful of dried porcini mushrooms
  • ½ bulb of good garlic split horizontally across the middle
  • 1 small sprig of thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 5-6 peppercorns
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled & finely diced
  • 2 sticks of celery, de-strung & finely sliced
  • 1 tin of flageolets beans, drained
  • 40g pearl barley, cooked for 45 minutes or until tender & drained
  • 3 large leaves of chard washed, rolled & shredded
  • 3 tbsp of medium sweet sherry
  • 2 tbsp of salt possibly more
  • pepper
  • Sourdough bread
  • Handful of grated parmesan
  • Good olive oil, to dress



  1. Break up the duck carcase into about 3 pieces and put it, along with any remaining bones from the legs, into a saucepan that when filled with water will generously cover the duck.
  2. Split the onions in half leaving the brown skins on and add them to the pot. Drop in the parsley stalks, the porcini mushrooms, the garlic, the thyme, the bay leaves and 5 or 6 peppercorns.
  3. Put the pan over the heat and bring it up to barely even a simmer – stocks that are allowed to boil too fast subsequently becoming murky & greasy. Your stock should in effect just tremble.
  4. Put the lid on, checking after 5 minutes that the heat doesn’t rise up to a simmer, and let the stock tremble for 2 hours. Whilst simmering occasionally, skim any scum from the top. Taste it now without salt – it should still have a strong essence of duck to it.
  5. Strain the stock very carefully through a colander and then again through a sieve.
  6. Pour the stock back into the pan and add the carrots and celery. Again bring up to a wobble and season generously with salt until a really good ducky taste is found.
  7. Cook for 8-10 or until the vegetables are tender.
  8. Now add the beans, pearl barley and the shredded chard, and cook for a further 5 minutes or until the chard is tender.
  9. Add the sherry with any reserved duck meat and cook for 1 or 2 minutes more, before checking the seasoning for the last time.
  10. Spoon into bowls and serve with a good loaf of sourdough bread. Finely grated parmesan & good olive oil on top can be a wonderful addition to the soup.



about the author

Alison Jane Reid

Alison Jane Reid - Journalist, Editor & Emerald Princess of Slow, Sustainable Luxury Living - 18 year track record interviewing real icons for: The Times, The Lady, You, The Mirror and Country Life. Now leading her alluring fairtrade, emerald revolution - Don’t Miss Out - Have you joined The Ethical Hedonist set?

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