Saturday, October 17, 2009

Pink Ducks

The famous ducks that do the "Duck Walk" daily at the Peabody Hotel in Little Rock were dressed for the occasion Friday! In honor of the annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure to benefit breast cancer research, the ducks feathers were all PINK!

Each morning, promptly at 11am, the hotel’s lobby is the scene of a remarkable ritual. The Peabody Little Rock Ducks leave their Royal Peabody Duck Palace, and arrive at a location in the lobby, where a crimson carpet has been laid out on the gleaming marble floor, leading to the marble fountain which was specially created for them. Three carpeted steps are in place. The ducks are accompanied by their Duck Master, who is clad in scarlet-and-gold trimmed jacket, and carries a brass head duck cane. Then, John Philip Souza’s King Cotton March fills the air, the The Peabody Little Rock Ducks march on their red carpet, climb three carpeted steps and dive into the fountain waters. They preen and play here all day, occasionally taking a little nap, and at precisely 5pm, the march is reversed back to the duck palace, where a dinner of hand-shredded Romaine lettuce, grated (not chopped) carrots, live worm meals and Peabody Duck Trail Mix, awaits them for an evening of quiet repose.

Peabody Hotel’s Duck Cookies

5 oz. unsalted butter - soft
2 oz. almond paste
2 ea. large eggs
4 oz. powdered sugar 10x
12 oz. all purpose flour
pinch salt
1 tsp. vanilla
1 ea. zest of lemon
6 oz. almond paste3 oz. powdered sugar 10x2 oz. egg yolks13 oz. raspberry preserves5 oz dark chocolate for dipping
6 oz. almond paste
In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, soften almond paste. Add in butter and mix until soft and smooth. Combine mixture with sugar, salt, vanilla and lemon zest and mix until fluffy. Add eggs and mix until incorporated well. Mix in flour until completely combined. Store in refrigerator for four hours or overnight. After chilling the dough, roll out on a smooth surface to ¼ inch thick. Cut out duck shapes and place on cookie sheet lined with parchment or wax paper. Bake 350 degrees for 12 minutes or until golden brown. Set aside to cool.
With a stand mixer and paddle attachment, soften almond paste.
Add sugar and mix until combined well.
Slowly add in egg yolk and mix until completely incorporated. Mix should be fairly thick but not too firm. Test with a spoon or spatula. If too thick to scoop out, add a little more egg yolk (you don’t want mix to be runny as you need to pipe). Place paste in a pastry bag with a small star tip. Pipe around border of duck cookie and set aside to dry for at least 8 hours. After drying, bake in oven at 400 degrees until paste is lightly brown. Set aside to cool. -After cookies are cool, heat raspberry jam/marmalade in saucepan, over low heat, until smooth. If still not smooth, add a small amount of water to smooth. Pour over middle of duck cookie to fill in cookie. Let cool. While you wait, melt the chocolate coating in a bowl over a saucepan filled ¼ full with water. Then dip each cookie into the chocolate halfway up the cookie and place on parchment or wax paper to dry. -Enjoy!

Peabody Hotel's Shooters
Strawberry Shortcake Shooter
1 pint strawberries
10 shooter glasses
12 fl. oz. heavy cream
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons sugar
1/3 cup vegetable shortening
1 cup milk
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Grease an 8-inch cake pan and set aside.
In a mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt and sugar. Cut in shortening with a pastry blender or 2 forks until crumbly. Stir in milk until just blended. Press dough into prepared pan; bake 15 minutes or until golden brown. Set aside to cool.MAKE WHIPPED CREAM: In a stand mixer with a whip, whip heavy cream with powdered sugar until stiff peaks form. Be careful not to over whip as cream will curdle. Place whipped cream into piping bag.PREPARE SHOOTERS: Clean strawberries and cut into small pieces. Cut shortcake into 20 pieces (small disks) the same size as the shooter glass. Place one piece of shortcake on bottom of each shooter glass.
(Yields 10)

Oreo Cookies and Cream Shooter
20 Oreo cookies
4 oz. white chocolate
12 fl.oz. heavy cream
10 shooter glasses
Break Oreo cookies into small pieces.
Chop white chocolate into small pieces.Place chocolate into a heat resistant bowl and melt over a double boiler. (Place a sauce pan on stove with simmering water and the bowl of chocolate over the top). Be careful not to overheat the chocolate as it will burn. In a stand mixer, whip the heavy cream to a soft peak (until the cream starts to form small peaks, but not firm enough to stand on its own). Make sure chocolate is still warm and fold whipped cream into it. The mousse will thicken. Place mousse into a piping bag.
ASSEMBLE SHOOTERS: Pipe a small amount of mousse on bottom of glass. Add a small amount of Oreo pieces on top of mousse. Repeat until you get to the top of the glass. There should be about three layers. Finish with Oreo pieces on the top. Chill for one hour. Enjoy!!(Yields 10) OTHER VARIATIONS:Raspberries and white chocolate mousse.Peaches with gingersnap cookies and white chocolate mousse.

Key Lime Shooter
12 fl. oz. heavy cream
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
15 sheets of graham cracker
10 shooter glasses
4 large egg yolks
14 fl. oz. sweetened condensed milk
10 fl. oz. key lime juice
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a bowl, mix together egg yolks, condensed milk, and Key Lime juice. Pour filling into an 8 inch pie dish or cake pan and bake 15 minutes until firm. Set aside to cool. Place cooled key lime filling in a piping bag. Whip heavy cream with powdered sugar in a stand mixer until firm peaks form (be careful not to over whip as cream will curdle). Put cream in a piping bag and store in refrigerator. Crush the graham cracker crumbs by hand or in a food processor. Gather all ingredients and glasses and assemble shooters. Place a small amount of graham cracker on bottom of glass.Pipe a small amount of key lime filling on top of graham crackers. Pipe a small amount of cream on top of key lime filling. Repeat layers until you get to the top of the glass. You should have two layers. You can garnish the top with a a small piece of lime if you have one or top it with some graham cracker. Chill for one hour. Enjoy!
(Yields 10)


  1. What a strange but darling ritual..never heard of anything like it! Sounds like the ducks get the royal treatment! The die for good..nummy and they look so pretty too. Thanks for sharing that, I feel like I've been there! Come say hi :D

  2. I saw this on TV once. I think it was the Duggar family show. Anyway, those cookies are the cutest things I've seen in a long while. I copied the recipe to use when the appropriate occasion arises. I hope you are having a wonderful day.

  3. What a treat! The duck cookie & the strawberry shooter looks sooooo delicious lol. And also all other And make sure you check your breast every year.


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