How to Make It
BRINE THE DUCK
Combine the 2 cups brown sugar, 2 cups salt, peppercorns, bay leaves, orange zest, juice, beer, and water in a large stockpot. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes.
Put the brine in the 4-gallon container or cooler, and add enough ice water to measure exactly 3 gallons. (It’s important to keep the salt-to-water ratio for brines. You’ve already got the salt, so the amount of ice water you need to add will vary according to how much liquid you lost when boiling the brine.) Dunk the duck in the brine and refrigerate for 24 hours, stirring once halfway through.
After 24 hours and when you’re ready to cook (if the duck brines a little longer, that’s okay), remove the duck from brine and pat dry with paper towels, both the skin and inside the cavity. Let sit out for 30 minutes to come to room temperature.
SMOKE THE DUCK
Smoke duck at 225 degrees for five hours or until back leg bone comes easily out.