Good Morning America Recipes

Duck and Risotto Stuffed Pumpkins

A Savory Autumn Recipe from Emeril Lagasse

GMA Recipes Dinner
Difficulty: Moderate
Cook Time: min

If you really want to impress your friends and family this fall, try Emeril Lagasse's recipes for Roasted Pumpkins Stuffed with Duck and Mushroom Risotto.


  • Pumpkin
  • 4 to 6 pie pumpkins (2 pounds each)
  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter (2 sticks)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons grated orange zest
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 2 teaspoons Emeril's Original Essence (recipe below)
  • Duck and Mushroom Risotto (recipe below)
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • Emeril's Original Essence
  • 2 1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon Cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Mix all of the ingredients together and store in an airtight container. Can be stored for up to 3 months. Note: this recipe makes about 3/4 cup

  • Risotto
  • 4 to 6 cups chicken stock or duck stock
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
  • 1/2 cup shallots, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 4 cups wild mushrooms, such as oyster shiitake and crimini, sliced, stemmed, and cleaned (about 12 ounces)
  • 1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
  • 1 cup Pinot Noir or other dry red wine
  • 2 cups Roast Duck meat, shredded, see recipe below, or shredded duck confit or roast chicken
  • 1/3 cup butter reserved from baking the pumpkins
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh oregano, minced
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • 1 duck liver, reserved from fresh duck, chopped, (this is optional)
  • Roast Duck
  • 1 5-pound domestic duck
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
  • Cooking Directions


    1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.

    With a sharp, heavy knife carefully remove the top third from each pumpkin. Remove the seeds and fibers from the insides and tops, discarding the fibers; reserve the seeds. Place the pumpkins and lids on two large baking sheets. Place 4 tablespoons of the butter inside each pumpkin.

    In a small bowl, combine the zest, cinnamon, salt, and allspice, and mix well. Divide the mixture among the pumpkins. Cover the pumpkins tightly with foil. Bake the pumpkins for 1 hour and 15 minutes, and the lids for about 1 hour.

    Meanwhile, place the reserved pumpkin seeds in a large colander, rinse well under cold running water and pat dry. Place in a large bowl, add the vegetable oil and Essence, and stir well to coat. Spread evenly on two baking sheets and toast until golden brown and fragrant, one hour. Remove from the oven, stir with a spatula to prevent the seeds from sticking, and cool on the baking sheet. (The seeds can be prepared up to two days in advance and once cool, kept in an airtight container until ready to serve.

    Remove the pumpkins and lids from the oven, uncover, and bake until tender, about 15 minutes longer. Remove from the oven and let sit until cool enough to handle, then drain the butter from the pumpkins and reserve 1/3 cup for the risotto.

    Spoon the risotto (below) into the cooked pumpkins and garnish with the Parmesan cheese. Replace the lids on the pumpkins. Sprinkle four to six large serving plates with the pumpkins seeds, top with the pumpkins, and serve immediately.


    Bring the stock, salt, and pepper, to a simmer in a medium heavy pot over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low and cover to keep warm.

    Heat the oil and melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the shallots, garlic, and duck liver (if using), and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the mushrooms, and cook, stirring, until the mushrooms give off their liquid, about 3 minutes.

    Add the rice, stirring to coat with oil, and cook, stirring constantly, until opaque, about 2 minutes. Add the wine to deglaze the pan and cook, stirring, until the liquid is reduced by half, about 4 minutes.

    Reduce the heat to medium. Add 1 cup of the hot stock, and cook, stirring constantly until nearly all the liquid has been absorbed. Continue adding more stock ½ cup at a time, stirring, until the previous addition is nearly absorbed before adding more, until all the stock has been added and the rice is tender yet still slightly firm, 16 to 18 minutes total cooking time.

    Fold in the pumpkin butter, thyme, and oregano, mixing well. Add the cheese and mix well. Serve hot.

    Roast Duck

    Preheat the oven to 500° F.

    Remove all visible fat from the duck. With a fork, prick the skin all over without piercing the meat. Sprinkle the duck with the salt and pepper. Place on a rack in a roasting pan and roast for 40 minutes.

    Reduce the oven temperature to 400° F and roast until the thigh juices run clear when pierced, about 30 minutes more. Remove from the oven and let cool.

    Remove the skin and discard. Remove the meat from the bones and discard the bones. Shred the meat. The meat can be stored, tightly covered, in the refrigerator for up to three days. Makes 2 to 3 cups shredded meat.

    Recipes courtesy of Emeril Lagasse © 2003

    Recipe Summary

    Main Ingredients: duck, pumpkin, rice, shallots, mushrooms

    Course: Dinner, Main Course

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