I’m sure you’ve all had moments like this, where you find yourself making duck l’orange for a cat even though the cat’s vegetarian owner won’t eat it.

It wasn’t just any night, of course.  It was professor M’s alpha cat’s birthday.  Cat I was turning 15, which is pretty venerable for a cat, not that she looks a day over ten.  She’s on a special diet and likes nothing more than duck.

So I bought some organic free range duck breast fillets from the freezer case at Whole Foods and whipped up a citrusy marinade.  I scored the skin and put the duck breasts skin side down in a pan of hot oil for five minutes or so, then turned them over for a bit and after pouring off most of the grease, transferred the pan to a 400 degree oven to finish.  Meanwhile, I reduced the marinade to a sauce and prof. M grilled up some vegetables.  (Note that when cooking for cats, you should reduce or eliminate onions and garlic, among other human foods that are bad for felines. In this case I served the cat the duck meat but not the sauce)  As soon as I started cooking, the cats perked up – living in a vegetarian household, they had probably never smelled such a thing.

Another citrusy canard Come and get it!

I plated one serving for myself and carefully diced up the other into two portions for the birthday cat and her younger housemate.  Secondary cat E sniffed his portion and wandered off.  He’s all about the processed food.  Cat I inhaled her portion and proceeded to gobble most of E’s as well.  I estimate on a body weight equivalence basis, her meal was akin to an average woman eating nearly 7 pounds of duck.

Duck l'orange; cat l'calico Hey, are you going to eat the rest of that?

I hope she’ll be able to go back to canned food.