- Lay the leg portions on a platter, skin side down. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the kosher salt and the black pepper. Place the garlic cloves, bay leaves, and sprigs of thyme on each of 2 leg portions. Lay the remaining 2 leg portions, flesh to flesh, on top. Put the reserved fat from the ducks in the bottom of a glass or plastic container. Top with the sandwiched leg portions. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt. Cover and refrigerate for 12 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F.
- Remove the duck from the refrigerator. Remove the garlic, bay leaves, thyme, and duck fat and reserve. Rinse the duck with cool water, rubbing off some of the salt and pepper. Pat dry with paper towels.
- Put the reserved garlic, bay leaves, thyme, and duck fat in the bottom of an enameled cast iron pot. Sprinkle evenly with the peppercorns and table salt. Lay the duck on top, skin side down. Add the olive oil. Cover and bake for 12 to 14 hours, or until the meat pulls away from the bone.
- Remove the duck from the fat. Strain the fat and reserve. To store the duck confit, place the duck leg portions in a container, cover with the reserved cooking fat, and store in the refrigerator. Alternately, pick the meat from the bones and place it in a stoneware container. Cover the meat with a thin layer of some of the strained fat. The duck confit can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.
- The excess oil can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator and used like butter for cooking. The tinge of duck taste in the oil is wonderful.
- To cook one duck, you need about 2 1/2 cup duck fat. A 4.5 lb. duck renders at least 1 cup of fat. Ask your butcher for extra duck fat, or you'll need another cooking fat to supplement. I'd use a mild lard; it's flavor isn't obtrusive. A 4.5 lb. Long Island duck typically yields about 8 oz confit meat (equal parts leg and breast meat).
- PREPARE THE DUCK: Cut the legs and each breast half from the duck. Trim any excess skin and fat from the legs and save for rendering.
- Gently but firmly pull the skin from the breast meat. Set the skin aside and put the breast and legs in a baking dish.
- Sprinkle liberally with the salt. Nestly the bay leaves, thyme and garlic among the duck pieces. Cover with plastic and refrigerate for 24 hours.
- RENDER THE FAT: Trim all the skin and fat from the carcass. Put the skin and fat, including the skin from the breasts and trimmings from the legs in a small heavy saucepan over low heat. Cook, partially covered, at a gentle simmer, stirring occasionally to prevent the skin from sticking.
- After about 1 1/2 hours, the skin will be a deep golden in color and crisp, meaning it has rendered almost all of its fat. Take the pan off the heat and let it cool slightly.
- Strain the fat into a container, seal it, and refrigerate until ready to use. The crisped skin may be eaten or discarded.
- COOK THE DUCK: In a heavy, 1 1/2 qt saucepan, melt the rendered fat over low heat. Blot the duck pieces with paper towels to remove any excess salt and to dry them. Put the duck in the pan, along with garlic, thyme and bay laves. Arrange the pieces so that they're all submerged. If needed, add more lard.
- Cook, uncovered, at a very gently simmer, between 185 degrees and 195 degrees, for 2 hours. Do not stir, and never let it boil. After 2 hours, the duck confit will be very tender and will come easily off the bone.
- Lift the duck from the fat using tongs and either use imediately or cool and store, covered, in the refrigerateor for up to a week.
Nutrition Facts : Calories 2760.3, Fat 277.8, SaturatedFat 97.7, Cholesterol 461.2, Sodium 2647.6, Carbohydrate 0.8, Fiber 0.1, Protein 58.8
- Place the duck breasts in the insert of a 5 1/2 to 6 quart slow cooker and add the fat, garlic, shallot, salt, pepper, and herbes de Provence. Cover, set the slow cooker on HIGH, and cook for 1 hour. Reduce the heat to LOW and cook until the duck is very, very tender--at least 4 and up to 8 hours. Use a slotted spoon to remove the duck from the fat, which can be strained, frozen, and reused. Serve the duck hot or at room temperature, or use it to make cassoulet.
- There are three ways to get chicken fat for this recipe: You can skim congealed fat off the top of chicken soup or stock, buy it in a plastic tub from a kosher butcher, or make it yourself. To make your own, place raw chicken fat in a heavy saucepan and cook very slowly over medium-low heat until the fat has melted, the connective tissue has darkened and crisped, and any water has evaporated. Strain the rendered fat into a bowl. Rendered chicken fat can be kept in a sealed container in the freezer for up to 6 months.
- The day before cooking, put the cumin and coriander seeds in a dry pan and toast until they are slightly coloured and aromatic. Remove to a board and crush them with the blade of a knife. Crush the juniper berries and mix with the spices and the salt. Rub the mixture over the duck, scatter with thyme, rosemary and sliced garlic and chill for 24 hrs, turning two or three times as they marinate.
- Next day, heat oven to 150C/130C fan/ gas 2. Wipe the duck with kitchen paper and pat dry, but don't wash off the marinade. (The salt extracts the water from the meat cells, which will be reinflated with fat as the duck cooks gently. If you wash it, you will simply reinflate the cells with water.)
- Put the duck in a cast-iron casserole and cover with the goose fat or duck fat. Add the bay leaves and peppercorns and cook for about 2½ hrs, or until the meat is almost falling away from the bone. You can store the duck very simply by placing it in a pudding bowl, covering it with the fat and keeping it in the fridge: as long as it stays covered with fat it will last for weeks.
- To cook, remove the confit duck legs from their fat. Put an ovenproof frying pan on the stove until it is hot. Add the duck legs, skin-side down, and cook for 4 mins. Turn the legs and transfer the pan to the oven for 30 mins, until crisp.
Duck Confit: Once esteemed as a preservation method, cooking and keeping duck in its rendered fat results in meltingly tender, moist, and extremely flavorful meat which can be used in a variety of simple preparations.
Provided by Tom Colicchio
Number Of Ingredients 8
- 1. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of salt in the bottom of a dish or plastic container large enough to hold the duck pieces in a single layer. Evenly scatter half the garlic, shallots, and thyme in the container. Arrange the duck, skin-side up, over the salt mixture, then sprinkle with the remaining salt, garlic, shallots, and thyme and a little pepper. Cover and refrigerate for 1-2 days.
- 2. Preheat the oven to 225°F. Melt the duck fat in a small saucepan. Brush the salt and seasonings off the duck. Arrange the duck pieces in a single snug layer in a high-sided baking dish or ovenproof saucepan. Pour the melted fat over the duck (the duck pieces should be covered by fat) and place the confit in the oven. Cook the confit slowly at a very slow simmer - just an occasional bubble - until the duck is tender and can be easily pulled from the bone, 2-3 hours. Remove the confit from the oven. Cool and store the duck in the fat. (The confit will keep in the refrigerator for several weeks.)
- Season the duck legs with kosher salt on both sides. Place them in a large resealable bag. Add the lemon zest and slices, garlic, allspice berries, juniper berries and fresh thyme. Seal, and massage the duck legs through the bag until all of the ingredients are evenly dispersed. Refrigerate for 24 hours to marinate.
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees F (93 degrees C).
- Remove the duck legs from the marinade. Rinse them off and pat dry. Place the rest of the contents of the bag into the bottom of an oven safe dish just large enough to hold the legs in a single layer, preferably enameled cast iron or glass. Arrange the duck legs skin side down in the dish. Pour the duck fat into a small saucepan and warm over low heat until liquid. Pour over the duck legs until they are completely covered. If the legs are not covered, you can top it off with some olive oil. As the legs cook, more fat will be rendered from the skin. Cover the dish with a lid.
- Bake for 6 to 7 hours in the preheated oven, until the meat pulls easily from the bone. Remove the duck legs from the fat and place in a sealable container. You may leave the bones in or remove them. Make sure there is room at the top of the container. Strain all of the solids from the remaining fat and discard the solids. Pour the fat over the duck in the container, covering completely. Seal and allow to come to room temperature. Once the jar is cool, place in the refrigerator and let the duck meat cure for 2 months. Reserve any leftover duck fat for other uses.
Nutrition Facts : Calories 2520.5 calories, Carbohydrate 9.5 g, Cholesterol 330.4 mg, Fat 270.5 g, Fiber 5.3 g, Protein 20.1 g, SaturatedFat 90 g, Sodium 2988.7 mg
- Trim fat from legs and thighs, leaving skin intact over meat, but removing excess. In a bowl, combine duck with salt, juniper berries, bay leaves, and garlic, and rub salt mixture all over the duck to cover completely. Cover and refrigerate at least 24 hours and up to 2 days.
- Remove from refrigerator and rub off excess cure (reserve garlic). Melt duck fat over medium heat in a Dutch oven large enough to hold duck, with about 3 inches space at the top. Add duck, skin side down, and heat until fat reaches about 200 degrees (test with a candy thermometer or electronic probe.) The surface should look like it is gently boiling (but should not actually be at a boil). Adjust heat if necessary to keep temperature consistent throughout cooking. Cook until the fat is clear and a knife stuck into one of the legs slides out easily, about 3 hours.
- Transfer the legs to several glass, stainless-steel, or glazed-stoneware containers. Strain fat, discarding any solids and pour, still warm, over legs, making sure they are completely covered. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until ready to use, up to 3 weeks.
- Remove desired amount of confit from fat, scraping off any excess, and keeping remaining legs covered with fat. Place skin side down in a cold cast-iron skillet or other heavy skillet. Place over medium-low heat and cover. Cook until skin is crisp, spooning off excess fat as it cooks, about 10 minutes. Serve as desired.
CONFIT OF DUCK
A classic, hugely popular recipe from France - one you can make time and time again and it just gets better
Provided by Barney Desmazery
Categories Dinner, Main course, Supper
Number Of Ingredients 6
- The day before you want to make the dish, scatter half the salt, half the garlic and half of the herbs over the base of a small shallow dish. Lay the duck legs, skin-side up, on top, then scatter over the remaining salt, garlic and herbs. Cover the duck and refrigerate overnight. This can be done up to 2 days ahead.
- Pour the wine into a saucepan that will snugly fit the duck legs in a single layer. Brush the salt off the duck legs and place them, skin-side down, in the wine. Cover the pan with a lid and place over a medium heat. As soon as the wine starts to bubble, turn the heat down to the lowest setting and cook for 2 hours, checking occasionally that the liquid is just barely simmering. (If you own a heat diffuser, it would be good to use it here.) After 2 hours, the duck legs should be submerged in their own fat and the meat should feel incredibly tender when prodded. Leave to cool.
- The duck legs are now cooked and can be eaten immediately - or you can follow the next step if you like them crisp. If you are preparing ahead, pack the duck legs tightly into a plastic container or jar and pour over the fat, but not the liquid at the bottom of the pan. Cover and leave in the fridge for up to a month, or freeze for up to 3 months. The liquid you are left with makes a tasty gravy, which can be chilled or frozen until needed.
- To reheat and crisp up the duck legs, heat oven to 220C/fan 200C/gas 7. Remove the legs from the fat and place them, skin-side down, in an ovenproof frying pan. Roast for 30-40 mins, turning halfway through, until brown and crisp. Serve with the reheated gravy, a crisp salad and some crisp golden ptoatoes.
Nutrition Facts : Calories 636 calories, Fat 57 grams fat, SaturatedFat 16 grams saturated fat, Protein 30 grams protein, Sodium 2.83 milligram of sodium
CONFIT DUCK LEGS
- Mince and mash 4 garlic cloves to a paste with a pinch of kosher salt. Stir together paste, kosher salt (1/4 cup), thyme, quatre épices, shallots, and bay leaves in a large bowl. Add duck legs and toss to coat, then marinate, covered and chilled, at least 1 day and up to 2 days.
- Wipe off marinade with paper towels.
- Trim off 1/4 inch from top of garlic head, then stick 2 whole cloves into head. Melt duck fat in a wide large heavy pot over low heat, then cook garlic head and duck legs, uncovered, over low heat until fat registers approximately 190°F, about 1 hour. Continue to cook duck, maintaining a temperature of 190 to 210°F, until a wooden pick slides easily into thighs, 2 to 3 hours more.
- Transfer duck with a slotted spoon to a large bowl (reserve garlic for another use if desired). Slowly pour duck fat through a fine-mesh sieve into a large crock or deep bowl, leaving any cloudy liquid or meat juices in bottom of pot, then pour strained fat over duck legs to cover by 1 inch. (If necessary, shorten drumstick bones 1 to 2 inches using a large heavy knife to fit legs more tightly in bowl.) Cool to room temperature, about 2 hours, then chill, covered, at least 8 hours.
- Just before serving, remove duck from fat (reserve fat for another use, such as frying), scraping off most of fat, then cook, skin side down, in a large heavy nonstick skillet over low heat, covered, until skin is crisp and duck is heated through, 15 to 20 minutes
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