What is an elegant way to serve whole duck livers?

I'm really not understanding how this question was voted to close.

A recipe request is "How do I make XXXX?"

This question is clearly asking for complementary flavours and presentation ideas. It's more about an original dish creation than asking for a recipe.

4 Answers 4


As far as being a poll question, this could go either way, depending on the answers it gets.

If it gets thorough answers, then it's good. It hasn't become a poll question.

If it starts pulling a bunch of one-line answers, then it became a poll question. We'd need to do something about it then. (Options would include editing the question to make it clearly not a poll, putting the in-depth-answers banner on it, or closing it).

If you emphasize that you're looking for a way to make it special while featuring a Chinese spoon, I think that'll greatly cut down on the chance of the latter.

(Personally, I'm far more interested in closing questions where the asker has put in no effort, especially where the answer is very easy to obtain from Google or a recipe site. E.g., "I have chicken, what can I make for dinner?")

  • I agree with this, and I think it means we just have to vote and comment on answers accordingly. If there's a one-line opinion comment with no explanation/backing it up, downvote and leave a comment asking for expansion.
    – Laura
    May 8, 2012 at 15:52

Food presentation is on-topic.

If you wanted to know about food presentation, you'd ask a chef. Its also fairly widely recognized that presentation is important to preparing a good meal, especially for guests. There are "presentation" questions that would be off-topic (e.g., selecting flowers for the vase on the table), but this isn't one of those.


The only part I take issue with is the very last phrase in the question: "...or other novel ideas."

That phrase is vague/open-ended enough to invite opinions and extended debate, much like "what would you do"... or "other duties as assigned".

If you can take out that phrase and be specific, i.e. state that you're looking for (a) food/flavour pairings and/or (b) ways to improve the visual appeal, then I think that would be fine. Just be wary of using specific phrases for which almost any response could be considered valid/correct; the more subjective the subject matter is, the more important it is to avoid ambiguity.

  • Too pedantic. Its stepping down on thought time before it happens. Without pulling a "Slams the door shut behind him", I'll say that that is far too restrictive a line too pull. When it stops being fun, people will stop coming. A little bit of open endedness is necessary to keep things fresh. You stomp on a newb like tat, and we've lost them for good. May 8, 2012 at 23:20
  • 1
    @ChrisCudmore: Did you ask this question looking for honest answers or are you just trying to force your philosophy onto everyone else? This is how we operate; it's how we've operated for over a year. Yes, it's subtle; the difference between a question and a discussion is always subtle. We have analytics and other tools to tell us if we're doing things that hurt growth or traffic; you're not the arbiter of that, nor can we really consider your statements here to be objective given that you wrote the question.
    – Aaronut
    May 8, 2012 at 23:29
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    To put it another way: Lots of people make minor mistakes in the way they ask or answer questions, and for the most part, that's well-tolerated here and we leave well enough alone. But what's unforgivable is insisting that your content is perfect as-is and refusing to make even a minor change when criticized. That stubbornness is what really drives people away, by creating unnecessary animosity between members and moderators (and in this category I am including community members with moderation privileges).
    – Aaronut
    May 8, 2012 at 23:31

There are two reasons why I would vote to close(if I had enough reputation to vote).

The first being that presentation of food is a bit iffy and on the edge of being off-topic. There was a sort discussion in the the chatroom and we noticed that there isn't anything in the FAQ stating whether it is on-topic or off-topic but an related post is:

Can I ask about how to use a specific ingredient? (AKA: Culinary Uses Guidelines)

Then of course is the polling aspect of the question. As it stands it is way too open ended to get any real or "good" answer. You would either need to put more restrictions on it, otherwise you will end up with a lot of, here is my favorite way to prepare/present duck heart which imo is no different from a recipe request.

  • "A question asking how to use a specific ingredient is obviously about cooking, but it may not always be appropriate for a question and answer site. When answering questions of this form we should consider: ... Classes of uses are best. eg: ... Flavour pairings in preference to a specific recipe" The question is asking for flavour pairings. May 8, 2012 at 14:48
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    I actually disagree entirely with your statement "that presentation of food is a bit iffy and on the edge of being off-topic." It's a critical component to cooking. May 8, 2012 at 14:51
  • @ChrisCudmore your question as it currently stands actually doesn't ask for flavor pairings; it's only about presentation (as I read it). But I still think it's a valid question that fits here just fine.
    – Laura
    May 8, 2012 at 15:00
  • Food presentation is not "iffy" it is distinctly on topic.
    – yossarian
    May 9, 2012 at 20:36

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